New York Attorney Malpractice Blog

Latest from New York Attorney Malpractice Blog

It is sadly ironic when a legal malpractice case is dismissed (from plaintiff’s point of view) and even more so when it is dismissed for “willful and contumacious”discovery conduct (from everyone’s point of view). Allstar Elecs., Inc. v DeLuca  2020 NY Slip Op 07018 [188 AD3d 1121] November 25, 2020 Appellate Division, Second Department is an example. “”The nature and degree of the penalty to be imposed pursuant to CPLR 3126 against a party who…
A line of legal malpractice cases in New York, arising primarilly out of matrimonial underlying matters have found that if the client positively answers an allocution question of whether the client is satisfied with the attorneys’work, then a later legal malpractice case is forfeit.  Here in Stennett v Goldberg & Cohn, LLP   2020 NY Slip Op 33901(U) November 23, 2020 Supreme Court, Kings County Docket Number: 511918/2018 Judge: Pamela L. Fisher highlihghts the history of…
Martin Assoc., Inc. v Illinois Natl. Ins. Co. 2020 NY Slip Op 06860 [188 AD3d 572] November 19, 2020 Appellate Division, First Department is an excellent example of how the “but for” principle is applied.  In this case, the claim was that defendant attorneys failed to notify the excess carrier, and thus, coverage was lost. “The court also properly dismissed the legal malpractice claim against Rubin. The duty to provide timely notice to the excess…
Schlam Stone & Dolan LLP v Toussie  2020 NY Slip Op 06874 Decided on November 19, 2020 Appellate Division, First Department is an example of how the account stated doctrine works for attorneys. “Plaintiff was entitled to summary judgment on its account stated claim, as it submitted documentary evidence showing that defendant Robert I. Toussie had “received and retained the invoice[s] without objection” (Perine Intl. Inc. v Bedford Clothiers, Inc., 143 AD3d 491
Flintlock Constr. Servs., LLC v Rubin, Fiorella & Friedman, LLP  2020 NY Slip Op 06711 Decided on November 17, 2020 Appellate Division, First  Department seems to be a case that could have been won, it it had been brought in 2016 rather than in 2018. “Plaintiff, a general contractor, entered into a construction agreement with nonparty Well-Come Holdings, Inc. to perform construction and excavation work on property owned by Well-Come. In 2004 an adjacent property…
Jewell Law, PLLC v Ruci  2020 NY Slip Op 33648(U) November 3, 2020 Supreme Court, New York County Docket Number: 655702/2019 Judge: Arthur F. Engoron displays some unique inductive reasoning, and some conventional legal reasoning.  Breach of Fiducary duty is dismissed in an unconventional matter.  Legal malpractice is more conventionally decided. “This Court finds that the breach of fiduciary duty claim is duplicative of the legal malpractice claim as they seek identical relief, namely,…
Hudson Yards LLC v Segal  2020 NY Slip Op 06353 Decided on November 05, 2020 Appellate Division, First Department is another case in which the brutal “but for” causation rule in legal malpractice ends a case. “To recover damages for legal malpractice, the plaintiff must establish that the attorney (1) “failed to exercise that degree of care, skill and diligence commonly possessed and exercised by a member of the legal community” and (2) that “such…
Olsen v Smith 2020 NY Slip Op 06214 [187 AD3d 675] October 29, 2020 Appellate Division, First Department is a familiar trope.  Supreme Court and the Appellate Division look over a pro-se complaint and find it wanting. “In this action for legal malpractice, plaintiff alleges that defendants’ mishandling of her defense in a Family Court proceeding brought against her by nonparty John Doe resulted in her settling a separate civil action and other disputes with…
In this case, the claim was that the attorney should have inquired about insurance that Plaintiff had, rather than taking the case and charging the client for representation that the insurance company would have provided. The jury found otherwise.  in Cohen v Sive, Paget & Riesel, P.C.,  2020 NY Slip Op 06050 [187 AD3d 634] October 27, 2020  the Appellate Division, First Department affirmed. “The jury’s verdict that defendant did not commit legal malpractice…
Plaintiff hired Defendant attorney to represent him in both a criminal and a civil matter.  The civil matter went wrong, and Plaintiff sued.  Defendant argued that you may not sue a criminal defense attorney absent a showing of “actual innocense.”  True enough, but… “The court properly denied the motion to dismiss the first cause of action for legal malpractice. Plaintiff adequately plead that defendant, who was retained to represent him in a criminal matter, owed…