New York Attorney Malpractice Blog

New York Attorney Malpractice Blog

Category Archives: Legal Malpractice Cases

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Legal Malpractice in a Real Estate Development Setting

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Whether there has been legal malpractice in a real estate development setting, or no malpractice at all depends on at least four elements.  The least interesting of these elements is the departure.  In almost every legal malpractice case there is a definite departure.  It’s the “proximate cause” and the “but for” portions of the equation… Continue Reading

A Huge Real Estate Project Gone Wrong…But No Legal Malpractice

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Real Estate rules Manhattan, and big (really big) money is attracted to the thought of new buildings in prime locations.  Bauhouse Group I, Inc. v Kalikow  2018 NY Slip Op 33055(U) December 4, 2018  Supreme Court, New York County  Docket Number: 158277/2017 Judge: Saliann Scarpulla is the story of a Sutton Place project which started, started to sour, went… Continue Reading

A Massive Tax Loss, But So Long Ago

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Boesky v Levine  2018 NY Slip Op 33017(U)  November 27, 2018  Supreme Court, New York County  Docket Number: 650756/2017  Judge: Eileen Bransten is a story containing the only certainties in life:  massive taxes and death, along with  a tricky tax scheme, bankruptcies, indictments, millions of dollars in losses and 15 years of litigation.  This case ends in dismissal, mostly for… Continue Reading

Collateral Estoppel and a Limited Retainer Rule Out Legal Malpractice Case

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Pritisker v Zamansky, LLC  2018 NY Slip Op 32930(U)  November 19, 2018 Supreme Court, New York County Docket Number: 150595/2017 Judge: Frank P. Nervo  is the kind of legal malpractice case that legal malpractice insurers love.  It appears to be a one-off, or a pro-se case in which a checklist of the elements of legal malpractice have been overlooked,… Continue Reading

Contribution, Perhaps; But No Indemnity

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Third-party practice between professionals is a major part of legal malpractice litigation.  Here, the defendant attorneys point the finger at accountants and argue that mistakes in the tax filings caused the damage of which they are accused. Rubin v Duncan  2018 NY Slip Op 32934(U)  November 16, 2018  Supreme Court, New York County Docket Number: 154131/2015 Judge: Paul A. Goetz … Continue Reading

Doctor v. Doctor Suit Morphs into Doctor v. Lawyer Suit

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Brooklyn Med. Eye Assoc., LLC. v Rivkin Radler LLP,  .2018 NY Slip Op 32913(U)  November 13, 2018 Supreme Court, Kings County Docket Number: 505978/18 Judge: Leon Ruchelsman is an example of what happens when a doctor to doctor business sale goes wrong. “At the end of 2012 an entity called Craniofacial Surgery P.C., owned by Dr. Dominick Golio entered into… Continue Reading

How To Calculate the Statute of Limitations

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Lopez v Lozner & Mastropietro, P.C.    2018 NY Slip Op 08017  Decided on November 21, 2018 Appellate Division, Second Department is a text-book lesson in how to calculate the legal malpractice statute of limitations in a motor-vehicle case where no case was started.  It is three years from the date of the motor-vehicle accident plus three years. “In… Continue Reading

A Most Unusual Assignment

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
In a fight of first impression, Defendant is battling to keep plaintiff from taking over defendant’s potential legal malpractice case against his attorney.  In this case, it seems that the Defendant and the attorney are childhood friends, and that Defendant would do almost anything (except pay plaintive) to protect the attorney.  What loyalty! Borges v… Continue Reading

A Very Big Credit Mess, But No Deceit

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Judge Ruchelsman spends time peeling back the onion layers in Woodcock v Birnbaum 2018 NY Slip Op 32841(U) November 7, 2018 Supreme Court, Kings County Docket Number: 507014/18 to come to the decision on whether there was a violation of Judiciary Law § 487.  Eventually, he finds that arguments were insufficient, but not deceitful. “During the fall of 2011 the… Continue Reading

Equitable Estoppel and the Statute of Limitations

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Equitable estoppel is (of course) an equitable defense to the statute of limitations.  It is successfully invoked in the legal malpractice field when the target attorney says, for example, “don’t worry about that pesky statute of limitations, we’ll keep talking about settlement for a while.”   What happens when plaintiff seeks to apply it to a… Continue Reading

They Weren’t Hiding, They Merely Forgot

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Personal injury law firms face the economic facts of personal injury litigation, including the necessity of having a full shelf of cases to pursue.  PI litigation takes time and what often happens is that the squeaky wheel case keeps the lawyer from working the less prominent case.  Statutes of limitation keep on running along, however,… Continue Reading

Once Dismissed, Twice Dismissed

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Weinberg v Kaminsky  2018 NY Slip Op 07652  Decided on November 13, 2018 Appellate Division, First Department is an example of the low-success attempt to recast a previously dismissed legal malpractice cause of action in another form.  Here, the Court simply wiped out the second attempt. “Order, Supreme Court, New York County (Manuel Mendez, J.), entered February… Continue Reading

Much Vexation But No Pleaded Damages

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Gur v Nadel & Clarlo, P.C.     2018 NY Slip Op 32779(U)  October 29, 2018  Supreme Court, New York County  Docket Number: 650275/2018 Judge: Arthur F. Engoron is an example of a legal malpractice case pled without regard to how one connects the complained of conduct with a bad economic outcome, or loss of a claim.  In the end, there… Continue Reading

How Did the Law Firm Miss This

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Perhaps the better question is how did the underwriter not see subsequent new stories that the coal mine was a fiction? “According to the February 2016 complaint, plaintiff was co-lead underwriter of a public offering of stock by Puda Coal, Inc., whose principal asset was its 90% interest in Shanxi Coal. Defendant was retained as… Continue Reading

Tort v. Contract in Professional Negligence

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Cathedral Gardens Condo Assn. v 110th St.  Equities, LLC.  2018 NY Slip Op 32618(U) October 15, 2018 Supreme Court, New York County Docket Number: 600175/2009 Judge: William Franc Perry stands for the principle that there can be either direct liability for a failure to provide professional services (tort) which brings “loss of asset” style damages, or there can be… Continue Reading

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
The Client is deaf.  A settlement is reached in his case.  The attorneys translate the settlement proposal to American Sign Language and the settlement is sealed.  The client then says that the settlement amount is not that which was translated.  He says he is getting less than he was told in ASL.  What to do?… Continue Reading

The Curtain Falls on a Legal Malpractice Case

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
We have often wondered at the quick demise of businesses that have spent a lot of money and time setting up a storefront, only to close 4 or 5 months later.  How could the owner invest so much and either mistake the customer base or make some other vast miscalculation?  Agatha LLC v Heller 2018 NY… Continue Reading

Two Lessons From a Legal Malpractice

Posted in Legal Malpractice Basics, Legal Malpractice Cases, Uncategorized
Armstrong v. Blank Rome LLP, Supreme Court, New York County, Index No. 651881/2013, Justice David B. Cohen, J., offers three lessons in a matrimonial – legal malpractice case.  The first is that such a case can survive the post-Katebi v. Fink landscape. The second is that an unexplained conflict of interest can lead to a good Judiciary… Continue Reading

No Legal Malpractice in the Unauthorized Practice of Law

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Spiegel v Ahearn  2018 NY Slip Op 32472(U)  October 1, 2018  Supreme Court, New York County Docket Number: 101251/2016  Judge: Melissa A. Crane is a very unusual case. “Between 2006 and 2012, plaintiff pro se Michael Spiegel and defendants Thomas Ahearn, Liridona Kastrat, Kristopher Kennington, and David Ortiz were employed by the Hotel Edison (“Hotel”), located on West 47th Street in… Continue Reading

Duplication but no Duplicity in this Professional Malpractice Case

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
The development of an apartment building in Manhattan is a mega-big thing.  Not only does it cost a lot, but there are a large number of difficult rules. W 106 Dev. LLC v Pilla  2018 NY Slip Op 32596(U)  October 10, 2018  Supreme Court, New York County  Docket Number: 654801/2016 Judge: Debra A. James  makes it clear that even… Continue Reading

Professional Malpractice v. Negligent Misrepresentation

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
In Sutton Animal Hosp. PLLC v D&D Dev., Inc.  2018 NY Slip Op 32425(U)  September 24, 2018  Supreme Court, New York County  Docket Number: 652781/2016  Judge Debra A. James discusses the difference between negligence of a professional to one in privity and to one only in quasi-privity.  The difference is enormous. “Moving defendants are correct that “‘recovery will not be granted to… Continue Reading

No Summary Judgment Here – For Either Side

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
Millian v Hafif & Assoc., PLLC   2018 NY Slip Op 51421(U)  Decided on October 9, 2018  Supreme Court, New York County  St. George, J. is the story of a condo purchase gone wrong.  Many of the construction legal malpractice cases arise from water damages, as does this one. “In this legal malpractice case, plaintiffs allege that defendants were… Continue Reading

A Rare Split the Baby Decision

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
It is our experience that Courts more often dismiss an entire legal malpractice case rather then dissect the various claims and keep some while jettisoning the balance. Here, in Sehgal v DiRaimondo  2018 NY Slip Op 06619  Decided on October 4, 2018  the Appellate Division, First Department does just that. “Plaintiff, a lawful permanent resident of the United… Continue Reading

Privity and Near Privity in a Real Estate Setting

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases
It was a $22 Million real estate purchase, and it was built on faulty foundations.  In 71 Park Ave. S., LLC v Fox Rothschild LLP  2018 NY Slip Op 32451(U)  October 1, 2018  Supreme Court, New York County  Docket Number: 158900/2017  Judge Saliann Scarpulla determines that one of the entities has no privity (and therefore no case) while the other… Continue Reading
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