Latest Articles

A fair number of summary judgment decisions rendered in Supreme Court are reversed in the Appellate Division.  Rather than simply ask how two courts can view the same evidence in such a differing light, note the deep doctrinal differences between that which Supreme Court credited and that which the Appellate Division relied upon  in 762 Westchester Ave. Realty, LLC v Mavrelis  2018 NY Slip Op 08452  Decided on December 12, 2018  Appellate Division, Second Department. “The plaintiff,…
Sometimes lawyers believe that they can affect the climate of litigation by getting a little press attention.  This may work on occasion, but can wreck a case as well.  Barr v Liddle & Robertson, L.L.P.  2018 NY Slip Op 33113(U)  December 3, 2018 Supreme Court, New York County Docket Number: 159781/14 Judge: Manuel J. Mendez is an example of the dangers of announcing a new law suit. “This action arises from an alleged legal malpractice occurring in December 2002…
DeMartino v Harris  2018 NY Slip Op 08278  Decided on December 5, 2018 Appellate Division, Second Department stands for the proposition that if a case is flawed in its service, it remains flawed throughout.  Here, service was demonstrably no good.  Nothing further good could save the case. “The plaintiffs commenced this action against the defendant, their former counsel, inter alia, to recover damages for legal malpractice in connection with legal representation provided to them by the defendant…
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 that are much more interesting.  In Bauhouse Group I, Inc. v Kalikow  2018 NY Slip Op 33055(U)  December 4, 2018  Supreme Court,…
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 bad and almost ended in Bankruptcy Court.  It then morphed into a lost legal malpractice case. “This action…
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 taking too long to sue. “In this action, plaintiffs seek to recover damages for, among other things, defendants’ alleged…
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, and in which prior litigation dooms the present case. “While the court has not converted this motion into one…
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  discusses how the relationship between the attorney and the accountant might play out. “Plaintiffs commenced the underlying malpractice action…
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 a purchase· agreement to buy Brooklyn Medical Eye Associates, LLC [hereinafter ‘BMEA’] owned by Dr. George Hyman. Dr. Golio.   He executed a…
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 an action, inter alia, to recover damages for legal malpractice, the plaintiff appeals from an order of the Supreme…