New York Attorney Malpractice Blog

New York Attorney Malpractice Blog

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A Pro-Se Case Withers

Posted in Uncategorized
Attorneys irritate people all the time, and irritated people act.  Dawson v Adam Leitman Bailey P.C.  2018 NY Slip Op 30224(U)  February 8, 2018  Supreme Court, New York County Docket Number: 152112/2017 Judge: Robert D. Kalish  is an example of how irritation can lead to litigation which fails. “Dawson alleges that he resided from August 29, 2015, to ·August 28,… Continue Reading

The Common-Interest Privilege and Legal Malpractice

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A recurring theme in legal malpractice litigation is discovery of communications between the client and attorneys.  While the attorney-client privilege is waived in a legal malpractice setting between plaintiff-client and defendant-attorney, the question still comes up with subsequent attorneys.  Different from the attorney-client privilege is the common-interest privilege.  Saint Annes Dev. Co. v Russ  2018 NY Slip… Continue Reading

Notice and an Opportunity to be Heard in a Sanctions Case

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases, Uncategorized
Plaintiff sued under Judiciary Law § 487 and was promptly the subject of sanctions and dismissal.  Supreme Court granted both, and an appeal ensued.  In Liang v Wei Ji  2017 NY Slip Op 08361 Decided on November 29, 2017  Appellate Division, Second Department,  the Court affirmed because plaintiff had previously been enjoined from starting any actions without prior permission. … Continue Reading

The Appellate Term Says: Not So Quickly!

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Weintraub v Petervary  2017 NY Slip Op 51595(U)  Decided on November 16, 2017 Appellate Term, Second Department is an example of how lower courts over-determine cases in favor of the attorney and to the detriment of the client.  Legal malpractice cases, we have argued in the past, are dismissed at a greater rate than in the general inventory… Continue Reading

Judiciary Law 487 Differences from the Other Side

Posted in Legal Malpractice Basics, Uncategorized
Last week we discussed how the First Department differs in its handling of Judiciary Law § 487 cases.  Here in Gorbatov v Tsirelman  2017 NY Slip Op 07979  Decided on November 15, 2017 Appellate Division, Second Department  is a further lesson, this time from the Second Department.  Conspicuously missing here is any language of delinquency.  The Second Department… Continue Reading

Several Straightforward Lessons from the First Department

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases, Uncategorized
O’Neal v Muchnick Golieb & Golieb, P.C.  2017 NY Slip Op 03125 [149 AD3d 636]  April 25, 2017  Appellate Division, First Department is notable for several terse lessons.  They were set forth in bullet fashion in the opinion: “The allegation that, while representing plaintiff in the assignment-of-lease negotiations, counsel secretly represented the counterparty so as to obtain favorable… Continue Reading

Not Judiciary Law 487, Not GBL 349, Not Dismissible

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Legal malpractice cases traditionally hew to the Legal Malpractice – Breach of Contract – Breach of Fiduciary axis.  Outlier cases add in some exotic causes of action. Gleyzerman v Law Offs. of Arthur Gershfeld & Assoc., PLLC 2017 NY Slip Op 07200  Decided on October 12, 2017  Appellate Division, First Department is a overbilling case, with multiple causes of… Continue Reading

How Did They Get This Wrong?

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Either Volvo owned the car and leased it to the auto accident defendant or it did not.  Simple issue, no?  How did this simple issue morph into an auto accident trial where Jacoby & Meyers represented plaintiff and the proofs were not in place before the jury.  More puzzling, how did this proof elude the… Continue Reading

Out Of State Rules Kill A New York Legal Malpractice Case

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Centre Lane Partners, LLC v Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher, & Flom LLP  2017 NY Slip Op 07221  Decided on October 17, 2017  Appellate Division, First Department illustrates two rules.  One of the rules is the borrowing statute, and the second is one that is both out-of-state and foreign to NY jurisprudence. The borrowing statute, in appropriate circumstances, applies… Continue Reading

Some Interesting Points on Continuous Representation

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An elderly couple sells some real estate and want to insulate the proceeds for estate planning purposes, specifically Medicare planning.  They have to make the transaction such that they keep the proceeds and shield them from a 5 year look-back review by Medicare.  As a reader of this blog, you surmise that something goes wrong. … Continue Reading

Problems Serving the Defendant? Look at “Good Cause” and “Interests of Justice”

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Wright v Kok-Min Kyan  2017 NY Slip Op 32057(U) September 28, 2017 Supreme Court, New York County Docket Number: 805475/2016 Judge: Eileen A. Rakower is a medical malpractice case that explains what to do when service of the summons and complaint has gone awry. “Plaintiffs served the Summons with Notice upon Lenox Hill Hospital by service of process upon Ryann… Continue Reading

A Clever Tactic Turns Sour

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It looks like Plaintiff came to dislike Supreme Court, New York County.  It wanted out, even after the Court dismissed on summary judgment, without prejudice.  They had the chance to re-file there, but instead took the case to Westchester County.  Forum shopping?  We don’t know. But EB Brands Holdings, Inc. v McGladrey, LLP  2017 NY Slip Op… Continue Reading

Judiciary Law 487 Article in the New York Law Journal

Posted in Legal Malpractice Basics, Uncategorized
We’re proud to present our “Judiciary Law § 487 Suffers an Earthquake” article from today’s New York Law Journal.  It discusses the recent sweep of JL § 487 law, including Bounkhoun v. Barnes et al., Case No. 15-cv-631A,  which now awaits a decision by District Judge Joseph Arcara whether to accept the recommendation. A recent Judiciary Law §487 case… Continue Reading

Direct and Derivitive Claims in Malpractice

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Privity is an essential element of standing to bring a legal or other professional malpractice claim.  Lack of privity reduces the ability to sue (some other person’s attorney) to fraud, malice or collusion.  So privity is ultra-important.  What happens when a stockholder wishes to sue the corporations attorney?  In that case the claim is either… Continue Reading

Melcher To Be Appealed Once Again

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Last week we reported a stunning decision in the Melcher case which gutted its damage claim.  Today, Christine Simmons in the New York Law Journal reports that the trial is stayed pending an appeal.  It will be the third appeal in the case which has gone up to the AD, to the New York Court of… Continue Reading

Architects Are Somehow Different

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases, Uncategorized
Sometimes flamboyant, often visionary, architects are different from the general masses.  Celebrity architects often have unique personal style, including unusual eyeglasses.  That all aside, architects are granted a higher standard of proof against them in negligence actions, as is described in New York Mar. & Gen. Ins. Co. v Perotto Assoc. Eng’g, P.C., 2017 NY Slip Op… Continue Reading

Money, Fashion, Greed and Cruelty

Posted in Legal Malpractice Cases, Uncategorized
Legal malpractice cases encapsulate the entire world.  In this short story, money, fashion, greed and cruelty combine into a fairy tail of tragedy.  Oleg Cassini was wildly successful.  He died in 2006 with an estate of about $ 60 Million.  He had a child from an earlier marriage with actress Gene Tierney, which ended in… Continue Reading

A Summer of Golden Oldie Judicary Law 487 Cases

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Last week we reported on the reappearance of Dupree v. Vorhees  in the Judiciary Law § 487 pantheon.  Today, we see that Melcher v Greenberg Traurig LLP   2017 NY Slip Op 31727(U) August 15, 2017 Supreme Court, New York County  Docket Number: 650188/2007  Judge: O. Peter Sherwood has similarly bobbed up. Melcher has a fascinating backstory, with documents disappearing  and… Continue Reading

BEST LAWYERS IN AMERICA

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We are extremely proud to report that Andrew Lavoott Bluestone has again been selected for inclusion in this years edition of The Best Lawyers in America (24th Edition).  He has been included since 2012.    … Continue Reading

No Judiciary Law 487 Claim; No Explanation

Posted in Uncategorized
Dec v BFM Realty, LLC  2017 NY Slip Op 05936  Decided on August 2, 2017  Appellate Division, Second Department is a legal malpractice and fraud case dismissed (after a number of years of litigation) in Kings County.  It alleged fraud and judiciary law § 487 violation.  Summary judgment was granted against Plaintiff.  Trying to glean more details… Continue Reading

Who’s In Charge and May The Attorney Rely on Authority?

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Plaintiff was working in the movie industry.  He and the movie company came to a parting, and a separation agreement was produced between him and the company, negotiated by the company’s CEO.  Later Plaintiff was not paid his equity investments and did not get certain credits.  Board is unhappy with the deal itself, and blames… Continue Reading

Voluntary Payment v. Overbilling in a Legal Malpractice Case

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There is a long history of doctor-lawyer litigations.  Often there seems to be a disconnect between the world-views of the protagonists.  Lawyers may seem avaricious and doctors naive and pedantic.  In Dubrow v Herman & Beinin  2017 NY Slip Op 31545(U) July 21, 2017 Supreme Court, New York County  Docket Number: 651605/2016  Judge: Ellen M. Coin  a… Continue Reading

Maintenance or Repair? It Really Makes A Difference in this Legal Malpractice Case

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Under Labor Law §240(1) a person may prevail in litigation if injured “during the “erection, demolition, repairing, altering, painting, cleaning or pointing of a building or structure” (Labor Law § 240[1]; see Moreira v Ponzo, 131 AD3d 1025, 1026; Enos v Werlatone, Inc., 68 AD3d 713, 714). In determining whether a particular activity constitutes “repairing,” courts are careful to… Continue Reading

Pump and Dump All The Way to Prison…Legal Malpractice Too?

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Wimbledon Fin. Master Fund, Ltd. v Weston Capital Mgt. LLC  2017 NY Slip Op 31515(U) July 17, 2017  Supreme Court, New York County  Docket Number: 653468/2015 as explained by  Judge Shirley Werner Kornreich is the material of a movie.  Here it is in a nutshell: “This action involves approximately 30 defendants and has already, in the… Continue Reading
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