Defendant attorney in Baram v Person 2017 NY Slip Op 06625 Decided on September 26, 2017
Appellate Division, First Department  tried to spread the blame in two ways, each of which failed.  A third-party action was wholly wiped out.  His arguments that papers were insufficient similarly failed.

“Plaintiffs alleged in their complaint that defendant attorney was negligent in failing to timely file an underlying malpractice claim in arbitration as against plaintiffs’ original attorneys, and that, as a result of such negligence, plaintiffs’ late-filed arbitration claim for actual and ascertainable damages was permanently stayed (see Herrick Feinstein LLP v Baram, 132 AD3d 499 [1st Dept 2015]). These factual allegations, as supplemented by plaintiffs’ papers in opposition to defendant attorney’s dismissal motion, sufficiently alleged a legal malpractice claim (see generally Leon v Martinez, 84 NY2d 83, 87-88 [1994]; see Brooks v Lewin, 21 AD3d 731, 734 [1st Dept 2005], lv denied 6 NY3d 713 [2006]; Escape Airports [USA], Inc. v Kent, Beatty & Gordon, LLP, 79 AD3d 437 [1st Dept 2010]).

Defendant attorney’s argument that plaintiffs’ papers in opposition to his motion to dismiss lacked evidentiary value because the annexed affidavits were notarized by the third-party defendant attorney (Feldman) and Feldman only submitted affirmations rather than affidavits, is unavailing. Feldman was not a party to plaintiffs’ action alleging malpractice, and as such, his submission of affirmations was appropriate, particularly since the causes of action in plaintiffs’ action and the third-party action were distinct and independent of one another (see CPLR 2106). Also, Feldman did not have a direct, pecuniary interest in the malpractice action, and thus was capable of acting as a notary in that action (see New York State, Department of State, Division of Licensing Services, Notary Public License Law at 7 [June 2016], [accessed Aug. 28, 2017]).

The motion court correctly dismissed the third-party complaint, as the viability of its claims for, among other things, abuse of process, fraud on the court, and tortious interference with advantageous business relationships were wholly undermined by the submissions on the motions.”

Andrew Lavoott Bluestone

Andrew Lavoott Bluestone has been an attorney for 40 years, with a career that spans criminal prosecution, civil litigation and appellate litigation. Mr. Bluestone became an Assistant District Attorney in Kings County in 1978, entered private practice in 1984 and in 1989 opened…

Andrew Lavoott Bluestone has been an attorney for 40 years, with a career that spans criminal prosecution, civil litigation and appellate litigation. Mr. Bluestone became an Assistant District Attorney in Kings County in 1978, entered private practice in 1984 and in 1989 opened his private law office and took his first legal malpractice case.

Since 1989, Bluestone has become a leader in the New York Plaintiff’s Legal Malpractice bar, handling a wide array of plaintiff’s legal malpractice cases arising from catastrophic personal injury, contracts, patents, commercial litigation, securities, matrimonial and custody issues, medical malpractice, insurance, product liability, real estate, landlord-tenant, foreclosures and has defended attorneys in a limited number of legal malpractice cases.

Bluestone also took an academic role in field, publishing the New York Attorney Malpractice Report from 2002-2004.  He started the “New York Attorney Malpractice Blog” in 2004, where he has published more than 4500 entries.

Mr. Bluestone has written 38 scholarly peer-reviewed articles concerning legal malpractice, many in the Outside Counsel column of the New York Law Journal. He has appeared as an Expert witness in multiple legal malpractice litigations.

Mr. Bluestone is an adjunct professor of law at St. John’s University College of Law, teaching Legal Malpractice.  Mr. Bluestone has argued legal malpractice cases in the Second Circuit, in the New York State Court of Appeals, each of the four New York Appellate Divisions, in all four of  the U.S. District Courts of New York and in Supreme Courts all over the state.  He has also been admitted pro haec vice in the states of Connecticut, New Jersey and Florida and was formally admitted to the US District Court of Connecticut and to its Bankruptcy Court all for legal malpractice matters. He has been retained by U.S. Trustees in legal malpractice cases from Bankruptcy Courts, and has represented municipalities, insurance companies, hedge funds, communications companies and international manufacturing firms. Mr. Bluestone regularly lectures in CLEs on legal malpractice.

Based upon his professional experience Bluestone was named a Diplomate and was Board Certified by the American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys in 2008 in Legal Malpractice. He remains Board Certified.  He was admitted to The Best Lawyers in America from 2012-2019.  He has been featured in Who’s Who in Law since 1993.

In the last years, Mr. Bluestone has been featured for two particularly noteworthy legal malpractice cases.  The first was a settlement of an $11.9 million dollar default legal malpractice case of Yeo v. Kasowitz, Benson, Torres & Friedman which was reported in the NYLJ on August 15, 2016. Most recently, Mr. Bluestone obtained a rare plaintiff’s verdict in a legal malpractice case on behalf of the City of White Plains v. Joseph Maria, reported in the NYLJ on February 14, 2017. It was the sole legal malpractice jury verdict in the State of New York for 2017.

Bluestone has been at the forefront of the development of legal malpractice principles and has contributed case law decisions, writing and lecturing which have been recognized by his peers.  He is regularly mentioned in academic writing, and his past cases are often cited in current legal malpractice decisions. He is recognized for his ample writings on Judiciary Law § 487, a 850 year old statute deriving from England which relates to attorney deceit.