Pepper v Jennings  2019 NY Slip Op 33755(U) December 27, 2019 Supreme Court, New York County Docket Number: 101392/2018 Judge: Carol R. Edmead holds that not all representation by an attorney is “continuous representation.’  In this case, Meeting with the judgment clerk on behalf of a prior client is insufficient to demonstrate continuing representation.

“In this legal malpractice action, Defendant Walter Jennings moves for dismissal of the complaint against him pursuant to the applicable statute oflimitations under CPLR 3211 (a)(5). Plaintiff opposes the motion and cross-moves for an order pursuant to CPLR 3013 dismissing
Defendant’s motion.”

“Plaintiffs final argument that the statute of limitations defense is factually inapplicable is also without merit. Plaintiff argues that Defendant’s representation of Plaintiff occurred up through September 22, 2015, meaning that it would have been just within the three-year window.

“It is well settled that a claim for legal malpractice accrues as of the date of the malpractice complained of or, if the attorney-client relationship has continued, as of the date when that relationship terminates” (Johnston v Raskin, 193 AD2d 786 [2d Dept 1993], citing
Glamm v. Allen, 57 NY2d 87 [1982]). Here, Defendant’s representation of Plaintiff terminated in September 2014 when Plaintiff requested his file bet transferred to new counsel (NYSCEF doc No. 17). The entire matter that Defendant represented Plaintiff in connection with was settled by Plaintiffs new counsel in February 2015 (NYSCEF doc No. 19). While Defendant did submit a bill to Plaintiff with an entry dated September 22, 2015, that entry is for Defendant meeting with the judgment clerk on the status of the Civil Court case (NYSCEF doc No. 30, ~ 21 ). That entry
thus cannot be a cause of action to Plaintiffs malpractice claim as it is in no way related to Defendant’s representation of Plaintiff.”

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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.