Blogs

Posts Categorized: Law Firms and Professional Ethics

Posted: June 9, 2017

Legal Malpractice Claim Based on Allegedly Faulty Tax Advice Survives Summary Judgment

On June 1, 2017, the First Department issued a decision in Leggiadro, Ltd. v. Winston & Strawn, LLP, 2017 NY Slip Op. 04361, holding that a legal malpractice claim based on allegedly faulty tax advice should survive summary judgment, explaining: The court properly declined to dismiss the corporate plaintiff’s claim that it would not have… Read more »

Posted: April 19, 2017

Plaintiff And Defendant’s Counsel Both Disqualified Due To Simultaneous Conflicted Representations

On March 3, 2017, Justice Sherwood of the New York County Commercial Division issued a decision in Georgetown Co., LLC v. IAC/Interactive Corp., 2017 NY Slip Op. 30676(U), granting motions to disqualify both plaintiffs’ counsel and defendants’ counsel. Georgetown Co. involves a dispute over a $35 million rights fee associated with development rights to a… Read more »

Posted: April 9, 2017

Fraud Claim Based on Same Facts as Legal Malpractice Claim Dismissed

On March 28, 2017, Justice Scarpulla of the New York County Commercial Division issued a decision in Brean, Murray, Carrett & Co. v. Morrison & Foerster LLP, 2017 NY Slip Op. 30602(U), dismissing a fraud claim based on the same facts as a legal malpractice claim, explaining: Brean’s fraud claim must also be dismissed. Brean’s… Read more »

Posted: April 6, 2017

Questions of Fact Regarding When Representation Ended Precluded Dismissal of Malpractice Claim

On April 5, 2017, the Second Department issued a decision in Stein Industries, Inc. v. Certilman Balin Adler & Hyman, LLP, 2017 NY Slip Op. 02688, holding that questions of fact regarding when a legal representation ended precluded dismissal on statute of limitations grounds, explaining: In moving to dismiss a cause of action pursuant to… Read more »

Posted: March 23, 2017

Judiciary Law § 478 Claim Cannot Be Based on Attorney Conduct in Arbitration

On March 16, 2017, the First Department issued a decision in Doscher v. Mannatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP, 2017 NY Slip Op. 01973, holding that a Judiciary Law Section 478 claim could not be based on attorney conduct in an arbitration, explaining: Plaintiff also failed to state a cause of action under Judiciary Law §… Read more »

Posted: February 10, 2017

Failure to Inform Client of Retention of Co-Counsel Does Not Render Retainer Unenforceable

On February 9, 2017, the Court of Appeals issued a decision in Marin v. Constitution Realty, LLC, 2017 NY Slip Op. 01019, holding that the failure to inform a client of the retention of co-counsel did not render the retainer unenforceable. In Marin, the plaintiff’s attorney-of-record engaged co-counsel to assist her in a matter, agreeing… Read more »

Posted: February 2, 2017

Strategic Decisions, Even Flawed Ones, Generally Do Not Support a Malpractice Claim

On January 26, 2017, the First Department issued a decision in Brookwood Companies, Inc. v Alston & Bird LLP, 2017 NY Slip Op. 00535, affirming the dismissal of a legal malpractice claim, explaining: Decisions regarding the evidentiary support for a motion or the legal theory of a case are commonly strategic decisions and a client’s… Read more »

Posted: December 14, 2016

Law Firm Equitably Estopped from Asserting Defense Against Former Client

On December 6, 2016, the First Department issued a decision in Deep Woods Holdings LLC v. Pryor Cashman LLP, 2016 NY Slip Op. 08156, holding that a law firm was equitably estopped from arguing that an assignment did not include tort claims, explaining: [A]ccepting plaintiff’s affidavit in opposition to defendants’ motion as true, we find… Read more »

Posted: November 16, 2016

Malpractice Claim Arises When Malpractice Occurs Not When Malpractice Becomes Apparent

On October 31, 2016, Justice Ostrager of the New York County Commercial Division issued a decision in BLDG Christopher LLC v. Herrick Feinstein LLP, 2016 NY Slip Op. 32242(U), holding that a legal malpractice claim accrued when the malpractice occurred, not when it became apparent, explaining: Pursuant to CPLR § 214(6), the statute of limitations… Read more »

Posted: October 28, 2016

Attorney Properly Disqualified Under Attorney-Witness Rule

On October 19, 2016, the Second Department issued a decision in Bajohr v. Berg, 2016 NY Slip Op. 06797, affirming an order disqualifying an attorney under the attorney-witness rule, explaining: The disqualification of an attorney is a matter that rests within the sound discretion of the trial court. The advocate-witness rules contained in the Rules… Read more »