Big Lawfirms. Big Cases, Big Legal Malpractice Headaches
In 2002 attorneys are retained to handle a legal matter relating to a parcel of property known as 350 Shore Road, Long Beach, New York by Xander. The clients wanted to contest easement rights over the 350 Shore Road property in favor of their own property at 360 Shore Road. This initial litigation led to a multiplicity of suits, now including the legal malpractice case Haberman v Xander Corp. 2012 NY Slip Op 31645(U) June 11, 2012 Sup Ct, Nassau County Docket Number: 021508/10 Judge: Randy Sue Marber. After Xander lost its easement case, it was sued by Davidoff, Malito & Hutcher for legal fees, and then was itself sued by the 350 Shore Road owners for malicious prosecution.
"As a consequence of that dismissal, the Plaintiffs, Haberman/Bellair commenced this action against the Defendant, Xander, and its board members alleging that because of the preliminary injunction obtained by Xander , the Plaintiffs were wrongfully prevented from proceeding with construction of Tower "B" at 350 Shore Road. The Plaintiffs allege that the adverse possession action prosecuted by Xander constituted malicious prosecution for which they seek to recover damages as well as the amount of the undertaking. In the amended Third-Part complaint, the Third-Part Plaintiff seeks indemnification and contribution from DMH for any damages Haberman/Belaire may recover against Xander, based on the claim that the legal services rendered were inadequate improper, negligent and contrary to the legal, equitable and economic interests of Xander and its shareholders and board members."
"The Third-Part Defendant, DMH' s dismissal motion is predicated on the ground that the Third-Party Plaintiff, Xander' s bare, conclusory allegations of DMH' s breach of contract, negligence and breach of fiduciary duty are legally insufficient to establish a prima facie case of legal malpractice. Further, the Third-Part Defendant, DMH, argues for dismissal pursuant to CPLR 3211 (a) (4) based on the pendency of a prior action which was brought by the Third-Part Defendant, DMH, to recover unpaid legal fees in the amount of $237 593.42, plus interest, from their former client, the Defendant/Third-Party Plaintiff Xander."
The Plaintiffs in the action (Index No. 002496/10), which was pending before the Hon. Antonio Brandveen would have been severely prejudiced by consolidating an action ready for trial with one in which discovery has not yet begun. The interests of justice and judicial economy would not have been served by a joint trial of these actions. Here the instant Third-Part action and the action (Index No. 002496/10), before the Hon. Antonio Brandveen , brought by the Defendant/Third-Part Plaintiffs prior attorneys, DMH, was not for the same causes of action and did not involve common questions of law or fact. Further, since a note of issue was filed in the action (Index No. 002496/10), that was before the Hon. Antonio Brandveen on September 22 , 2011 and that
action has been settled, there is no need to further consider the Defendant/Third-Part
Plaintiff, Xander s Order to Show Cause (Mot. Seq. 02) seeking the consolidation or joint
trial of this action with the action (Index No. 002496/1 0), which was before the Hon. Antonio