Andrew Lavoott Bluestone

The Law Firm of Andrew Lavoott Bluestone opened in 1989. Since then he has tried both plaintiff and defendant cases, in general negligence, commercial litigation, medical malpractice, attorney malpractice [both plaintiff's and uninsured defendants], as well as real estate matters, landlord-tenant matters. In 2015 he was appointed Adjunct Professor of Law at St. John's University, School of Law.

Andrew Lavoott Bluestone Blogs

Latest from Andrew Lavoott Bluestone

Continuous representation tolls the statute of limitations, and requires actual work, a mutual understanding between client and attorney of the need for the actual work along with a mutual relationship of trust and confidence.  In RJR Mech. Inc. v Ruvoldt  2019 NY Slip Op 01844 Decided on March 14, 2019 Appellate Division, First Department some of that was missing. “The statute of limitations on a cause of action for legal malpractice is three years (see CPLR 214[6]).…
In Pugliese v Martin Law Group, P.C.  2019 NY Slip Op 01810  Decided on March 13, 2019 the Appellate Division, Second Department  reminds that legal malpractice consists of more than a mere mistake.  Plaintiff must still prove proximate or “but for” cause.  Merely failing to perfect an appeal is insufficient. “ORDERED that the order is modified, on the law, by deleting the provision thereof granting that branch of the defendants’ motion which was for summary judgment…
Is the client satisfied with the settlement is different from whether the client is “satisfied with the representation” which, in the past few years has taken on a totemic power to kill legal malpractice cases.  Clients, when/if asked at the settlement allocution whether they are satisfied with their attorney’s representation and required to answer.  If they answer yes, a legal malpractice case based upon mistakes by the attorney is severely compromised.  We think this perverse. …
An-Jung v Rower LLC  2019 NY Slip Op 30600(U)  March 6, 2019  Supreme Court, New York County  Docket Number: 152694/2018  Judge: Francis A. Kahn III is a thoughtful discussion of the difference between legal malpractice and an overbiling case.  Here, in a matrimonial setting, plaintiff’s case is that the bills lack any discernible detail and are excessive.  Is this legal malpractice, fraud or unjust enrichment?  No.  Read on for the Court’s explanation. “In the complaint, the facts alleged focus…
The attorney client privilege is sacrosanct, no?  Well, not really.  Heth v Satterlee Stephens Burke & Burke LLP  2019 NY Slip Op 30555(U)  March 5, 2019  Supreme Court, New York County  Docket Number: 650379/2015  Judge: Andrew Borrok demonstrates what happens when the client possibly  discusses how attorney 1 is handling the case with attorney 2. “As more fully set forth on the record, the “at-issue” waiver of the attorney-client privilege arises where a party places the subject matter of…
Akin to a pro-se situation, when law firms defend themselves in a legal malpractice setting they run the risk of attorney disqualification on the attorney-witness rule. Quadrozzi v Castro  2019 NY Slip Op 30550(U)  March 5, 2019  Supreme Court, New York  County Docket Number: 151675/2018 Judge: Frank P. Nervo is a good example. “Plaintiffs seek to disqualify defense counsel on the basis that defense counsel, an associate at defendants’ law firm, was closely involved in plaintiffs real estate closing and defendants’…
Big projects require lots of legal work.  In Whiteman Osterman & Hanna, LLP v Preserve Assoc., LLC  2019 NY Slip Op 29056  Decided on February 28, 2019  Supreme Court, Albany County Platkin, J. we see the unusual situation in which a law firm waits 13 years or so to collect a huge legal fee, and does so in a way that allows immediate summary judgment on the amount. “Pending before the Court are motions for summary judgment in…
The experts were hired, and now plaintiff (whose attorney hired them) says that they were inexpert.  Marks Paneth LLP v Economic Alchemy LLC     2019 NY Slip Op 30532(U)  February 26, 2019  Supreme Court, New York County Docket Number: 60427/2017 Judge: Lucy Billings is determined on sufficiency of pleading grounds.  The fraud claim fails. “Plaintiff Marks Paneth LLP seeks damages from defendantthird party plaintiff Economic Alchemy LLC, an intellectual property holding company, for its breach of a contract for expert services…
Departure is the first question in legal malpractice; it is the one that almost everyone gets right.  What is often shocking to the client is that judges (and then juries) scrutinize the remaining three elements (proximate cause, “but for” causation and ascertainable damages) in reaching a decision. Lisi v Lowenstein Sandler LLP  2019 NY Slip Op 01665  Decided on March 7, 2019 Appellate Division, First Department is an example of how the fourth elements comes into play. …
There is great dispute over the elements of Judiciary Law § 487.  Is it attempted deceit or successful deceit?  Does it require egregious conduct, or chronic conduct or chronic and extreme conduct or a pattern of delinquency? Schwartzman v Pliskin, Rubano, Baum & Vitulli  2019 NY Slip Op 30419(U)  January 14, 2019  Supreme Court, Queens County  Docket Number: 714510/2017  Judge: Joseph Risi takes the position that all the above are required. “Section 487 of the Judiciary Law broadly provides for a…