Blogs

Posts Categorized: Motion to Dismiss; Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings

Posted: December 20, 2013

Legal Malpractice Claim Survives Despite No Allegation of Attorney-Client Relationship

On December 18, 2013, the Second Department issued a decision in Mr. San, LLC v. Zucker & Kwestel, LLP, 2013 NY Slip Op. 08416, holding that, in exceptional circumstances, a legal malpractice claim can survive a motion to dismiss despite the lack of an attorney-client relationship. The Second Department’s opinion was brief: While the complaint... Read more »

Posted: December 17, 2013

Whether Liquidated Damages Clause is Unenforceable Penalty is Fact Question

On December 6, 2013, Justice Friedman of the New York County Commercial Division issued a decision in 412 W. 12th St. 1N LLC v. C and A Capital LLC, 2013 NY Slip Op. 33099(U), ruling that whether a liquidated damages clause was an unenforcable penalty was a fact question that could not be resolved on a... Read more »

Posted: December 13, 2013

Dispute Over Authentiticy Precludes Dismissal Based on Documentary Evidence

On December 12, 2013, the First Department issued a decision in Laurel Hill Advisory Group, LLC v. American Stock Transfer & Trust Co., LLC, 2013 NY Slip Op. 08351, illustrating one limit to a motion to dismiss based on documentary evidence: a dispute about the authenticity of the documents relied upon in the motion. In Laurel... Read more »

Posted: December 7, 2013

First Department Applies De Facto Merger Doctrine in Reversing Grant of Motion to Dismiss

On November 14, 2013, the First Department issued a decision in ePlus Group Inc. v. SNR Denton LLP, 2013 N.Y. Slip Op. 07566, applying the de facto merger doctrine. ePlus Group arose “out of the alleged breach of a lease for IT equipment and services entered into by plaintiff and the now defunct law firm of Thacher... Read more »

Posted: November 24, 2013

Leave to Re-Plead Already Dismissed Claims Denied

On November 12, 2013, Justice Sherwood of the New York County Commercial Division issued a decision in Broadway West Enterprises, Ltd. v. Doral Money, Inc., 2013 NY Slip Op. 32912(U), denying plaintiff’s motion, made shortly before the close of discovery, for leave to file a second amended complaint to supplement factual allegations contained in the... Read more »

Posted: November 23, 2013

Jurisdictional Claims Survive But Only Jurisdictional Discovery Allowed

On November 20, 2013, the Second Department issued a decision in Goel v. Ramachandran, 2013 N.Y. Slip Op. 07708, illustrating the liberal standard applied to jurisdictional claims prior to discovery. In Goel, the plaintiffs alleged that there was jurisdiction over a foreign defendant because it was a “mere department of” its US parent. The Second... Read more »

Posted: November 17, 2013

Contract-Related Claims Dismissed Despite Allegation that Provisions Were Added Surreptitiously or by Mistake

On November 14, 2013, the First Department issued a decision in VFS Fin. v. Insurance Servs. Corp., 2013 NY Slip Op. 07576, illustrating the bedrock principle of contract interpretation that a party is presumed to have read and understood the contract it signed. In VFS Fin., the defendant asserted “counterclaims and third-party claims of fraud in... Read more »

Posted: November 16, 2013

Claim for Breach of NDA Allowed to Proceed While All Tort Claims Relating to the Alleged Breach Are Dismissed on the Pleadings

On November 7, 2013, Justice Schweitzer of the New York County Commercial Division issued a decision in Affinity LLP v. GfK Mediamark Research & Intelligence, LLC, 2013 NY Slip Op. 32873(U), in which he denied a pre-Answer motion to dismiss a claim alleging the breach of a non-disclosure agreement (“NDA”) but granted the motion insofar as... Read more »

Posted: November 16, 2013

Decision Illustrates the Danger of Overreaching in Pleading

On November 7, 2013, Justice Schweitzer of the New York County Commercial Division issued a decision in U.S. Bank Natl. Assoc. v. Lightstone Holdings LLC, 2013 NY Slip Op. 32874(U), illustrating the dangers of overreaching in pleading. In U.S. Bank, the plaintiff amended its complaint in what had been a breach of contract action to... Read more »

Posted: November 14, 2013

Lease Clause Requiring Commercially Reasonable Efforts Strictly Construed Against Plaintiffs

On November 14, 2013, the Court of Appeals issued a decision in JFK Holding Company LLC v. City of New York, Docket No. 196, declining to apply a broad interpretation to a commercially reasonable efforts clause. In JFK Holding, plaintiff building owners sued the Salvation Army, “which operated” a building leased from plaintiffs “as a homeless... Read more »