The Rare Case of Plaintiff's Summary Judgment in Legal Malpractice
Board of Mgrs. of Bridge Tower Place Condominium v Starr Assoc. LLP 2013 NY Slip Op 7684 [111 AD3d 526] Appellate Division, First Department teaches three important lessons in a very short decision. The simple facts of the case are that defendant attorneys drafted a stipulation which stripped plaintiff of the right to amend its bylaws to attain a specific result in the underlying case. Plaintiffs successfully moved for summary judgment on the issue of liability and dismissed defendant's' affirmative defense of comparative fault.
Lesson 1: In this case no expert is necessary to establish that defendants' conduct fell below the standard of the professions generally.
Lesson 2: This was a case in which "but for causation' could be found as a matter of law. (rare indeed)
Lesson 3: Even though the Board President was an attorney, he relied upon defendants to draft the stipulation, and cannot be held in comparative fault.