In an unique Judiciary Law 487 setting, Justice Billings has appointed a Referee to hear and determine Judiciary Law 487 claims in Papageorgiou v Consolidated Edison Co. of N.Y., Inc. 2023 NY Slip Op 33217(U) September 15, 2023 Supreme Court, New York County Docket Number: Index No. 115106/2004.

“To the extent the motion by Flomenhaft Law Firm, PLLC, requires an examination of a long account, the court refers the motion to a referee to hear and determine. C.P.L.R. § 4317(b). The referee will hear and determine the allocation of attorneys’
fees among the successive attorneys for Luis Casas and his appointed guardian in this action, based on any agreements between the attorneys and otherwise on a quantum meruit basis. N.Y. Jud. Law§ 475. · In particulal, the referee will enforce the
agreement between Michael Flomenhaft Esq. and Perecman Law Firm, P.L.L.C., that David Perecman Esq. would determine the fair and reasonable compensation to Flomenhaft for his work on this action when Perecman Law Firm represented plaintiff.

The allocation of attorneys’ fee& will consider whether any attorney delayed the act~on without accomplishing results and whether the any such attorney consequently is entitled to reduced or no fees. The referee will ·determine these issues and also
will hear and recommend to the court whether plaintiff and Flomenhaft Law Firm are entitled to sanctions. C.P.L.R. 5543 & 4317(-) 22 N.Y.C.R.R. § 130-1.1 (c). Sanctions may be in the form of (1) interest on the settlement distributed to Luis Casas and on the attorneys’ fees and expenses awarded to Flomenhaft Law Firm, to compensate for
the delay in recovery, C.P.L.R. §§ 5001, 5004, or (2) a specified amount of additional fees incurred to combat another attorney’s delay. Both forms of relief are to be charged to the attorney who caused the delay.

Finally, the referee will hear and recommend whether the conduct of any attorney who delayed or obstructed resolution of this action was so egregious, so intentionally deceitful or protracted, as to violate New York Judiciary Law§ 487. C.P.L.R. 543_. While
the compensatory damages plaintiff and Flomenhaft Law Firm seek under Judiciary Law § 487 are the same as under 22 N.Y.C.R.R. § 130-1.1, interest on the settlement amount and attorneys’ fees recovered or additional attorneys’· fees, liability under the
statute would trigger treble damages.”

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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.