Adams v Pulvers, Pulvers & Thompson, L.L.P. 2022 NY Slip Op 30160(U)
January 19, 2022 Supreme Court, New York County Docket Number: Index No. 154594/2021 Judge: David Benjamin Cohen seems to have a mistake (typo) regarding the most important date in the decision, but assuming that 2017 is really 2018, it seems that the attorneys took on a trip and fall over a manhole, failed to commence an action against the City and failed to realize that manhole covers and Con Edison go together like coffee and cream.
“On June 12, 2017, Plaintiff filed a notice of claim against the City of New York, the New York City Transit Authority, and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Doc 11) claiming that he was injured when he tripped over the lip of an unmarked manhole cover located in the
crosswalk on 14th Street and Union Square East in New York on March 15, 2017 (“the underlying claim”). On December 19, 2017, the City of New York conducted a 50-h hearing (Doc 12). On July 21, 2017, Plaintiff retained Pulvers to represent him in relation to the underlying claim (Doc 10, the Retainer Agreement). On May 11, 2021, Plaintiff filed a complaint alleging that he retained Defendants to represent him in relation to the underlying claim against the City and State of New York, the Metropolitan Transit Authority, and Consolidated Edison (Doc 7), and Defendants were “negligent in the prosecution of the [underlying claim] in that they failed to commence an action and otherwise prosecute on plaintiffs behalf [and] [o]n March 3, 2019, [Defendants] informed plaintiff that … they failed to commence a timely action … on his behalf’ (id. 7-10). ”
“Here, Plaintiffs malpractice claim is insufficiently pleaded against Defendants because the Complaint fails to set forth any specific facts or submit any proof to establish the “but for” causation element, i.e., that “but for” Defendants’ alleged negligence, Plaintiff would have
prevailed in an action arising from the underlying claim against the City and State of New York, the Metropolitan Transit Authority, and/or Consolidated Edison. There was a notice of claim filed against the City of New York, which held a 50-h hearing, before Defendants were even
retained and Plaintiff does not allege whether or how he would have prevailed against the City but for Defendants’ negligence. Further, Plaintiff could have brought an action against Consolidated Edison until March 15, 2020 (see CPLR 214), which is a year after Defendants
allegedly told Plaintiff that they failed to bring an action on his behalf. “