Jones Law Firm, P.C. v J Synergy Green, Inc. 2024 NY Slip Op 31127(U) April 2, 2024
Supreme Court, New York County Docket Number: Index No. 653730/2023 Judge: Lyle E. Frank illustrates the principle that while there may be a Code of Professional Conduct violation, there must be a proximate connection with pecuniary damages to accompany and be cause by that violation.

“The underlying action arises out of allegations that defendant/third-party plaintiff failed to pay plaintiffs legal fees as required by its engagement agreement. The third-party action and counterclaims arise out of the plaintiffs relationship with third-party defendants PAM and David Treyster, in that defendants/third-party plaintiffs were caused to suffer damages based on the failure to disclose the relationship. It is undisputed that at the time the engagement agreement was signed by plaintiff and defendants, plaintiffs principal had a 100% ownership interest in PAM.”

“The Court finds that here, similar to the plaintiffs in Connaughton, the third-party
complaint and counterclaims fails to specify any compensable damages from PAM’ s alleged fraud. In opposition to P AMs motion the defendants/third-party plaintiffs contend that plaintiff and PAM are agents of one another and thus PAM is vicariously liable for the plaintiffs alleged fraudulent conduct. This argument however misses the mark and is also unsupported by specific factual allegations. The third-party complaint and counterclaims fail to allege a sufficient basis to pierce the corporate veil or any facts sufficient to support defendant/third-party plaintiffs’ contention that any alleged fraud caused any additional damages separate and apart from those incurred by the
alleged fraudulent conduct of plaintiff.”

” Here, the Court finds that allowing defendant/third-party plaintiffs amendment would be futile. The proposed amended complaint fails to cure the deficiencies cited above. Similarly, the Court agrees that because the third-party complaint fails to properly state a claim for an underlying tort there can be no conspiracy cause of action pursuant to Judiciary Law § 487 (Am. Preferred Prescription, Inc. v Health Mgt., 252 AD2d 414,416 [1st Dept 1998]).”

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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.