In a very short affirmance, the First Department upheld the dismissal of what was a very long short case in Garr Silpe, P.C. v Gorman. 2021 NY Slip Op 01944 Decided on March 30, 2021 Appellate Division, First Department  .  Plaintiff hired her ninth attorney mid trial, and not surprisingly, did not do well at trial.  She sued, amended, amended again and asked to amend for the fourth try.  All was lost.

“Plaintiff was hired mid-trial, after defendant had been represented by eight prior law firms, and at times represented herself. Defendant’s conclusory allegations that plaintiff law firm failed to prepare for trial and gather evidence in her matrimonial action do not state a cause of action for legal malpractice (see Barbara King Family Trust v Voluto Ventures LLC, 46 AD3d 423, 424 [1st Dept 2007]; see generally Rosner v Paley, 65 NY2d 736, 738 [1985] [attorney’s “selection of one of among several reasonable courses of action does not constitute malpractice”]). Defendant’s retrospective complaints about plaintiff’s recommendations and trial are an insufficient basis to show that plaintiff’s decisions are actionable (Rodriguez v Fredericks, 213 AD2d 176, 178 [1st Dept 1995], lv denied 85 NY2d 812 [1995]). Nor does defendant allege facts that would establish that, but for plaintiff’s negligence, she would have obtained a more favorable result (Robson & Miller, LLP v Sakow, 121 AD3d 562, 563-564 [1st Dept 2014]). We note that we largely affirmed on appeal the trial court’s disposition (Gorman v Gorman, 187 AD3d 636 [1st Dept 2020]). Further, the breach of contract counterclaim is duplicative of the malpractice counterclaim.

The court properly denied defendant’s motions for leave to amend because the defects in the original pleading were not cured by either of the proposed amendments (Meimeteas v Carter Ledyard & Milburn LLP, 105 AD3d 643 [1st Dept 2013]).”

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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.