Russo & Gould Partner Kevin Horbatiuk spent his weekend on the Hudson River with Heroes on the Hudson and the Wounded Warrior Project. Kevin and members of NYC Kayak Clubs helped provide a day of fun on the water to former servicemen and servicewomen. All enjoyed a beautiful day of kayaking, sailing, and being together.
Congratulations to Senior Associate, Audrey D. Medd who secured a Judgment of Nonsuit against Plaintiff for her client which effectively dismissed the Plaintiff''s Complaint. Plaintiff now faces a difficult battle in the next four months if she decides to move to open the judgment as it is up to the Court''s discretion.
The New York State Assembly and the New York State Senate have passed Bill S74A, known as the Grieving Families Act. NYS Gov. Kathy Hochul''s signature is the remaining last step to turn it into law. If signed into law, it will be the first update to New York''s wrongful death statute in more than 150 years.
Congratulations to our partner, Marie Castronuovo, on winning summary judgment in two different cases for Pritchard Industries. The first case, Mamadou Camara v. Boston Properties and Pritchard Industries, was venued in NY County. It involved a slip and fall on a loading dock ramp at the building owned by Boston Properties where Pritchard was the janitorial service provider. The second case, Theresa Nuovo v. 100 Wall Realty v. Pritchard Industries, was venued in Westchester County, and also involved a slip and fall. The plaintiff fell on weather mats in the lobby of 100 Wall Street during an active rain event. The evidence revealed that the lobby mats were in place, but the plaintiff argued they were insufficient and improperly configured with a two-foot space between two mats that caused her to fall when she stepped off one mat to get to the other.
Associate Trishe Hynes won summary judgment for our client in the matter of Califano v. Westley, Index No. 607554/2019. The plaintiff was seeking $150,000 on this claim, in which he had a litany of prior injuries. Trishe argued that he was unable to meet the serious injury threshold, as all of his injuries were pre-existing and not causally related to the subject accident.
We are proud to share that our partner, Florina Altshiler, was named to the Pro Bono Honor Roll for the Western District of New York. Providing pro bono representation to litigants in civil cases is part of WDNY''s history. Each year, the Court releases their honor roll, thanking the attorneys for their service.
Our partner Florina Altshiler was selected as July''s featured mediator in the monthly mediator spotlight for the Western District of New York. Each month, the court features mediators from different panels. This helps members of the bar become familiar with the mediators available to them.
David Gould does it again, this time in a case before Judge John Katsonis in the Queens County Civil Court. The plaintiff in the case was a driver in a two-car collision in December 2014, in Nassau County. The only issue to be decided was whether the plaintiff established a "serious injury." She claimed that she sustained a herniated disc in her neck and bulging discs in her back as a result of the accident. David argued that the impact was so slight that it could not have caused the injuries she claimed. The jury deliberated for all of 19 minutes and rendered a unanimous defense verdict holding that she did not sustain a "serious injury."
Congratulations to our Senior Associate, Audrey D. Medd for achieving a favorable settlement for our clients in a highly contentious matter. In this case, venued in the Federal Court, District of Connecticut, plaintiffs alleged housing code violations, including mold and other toxic contaminant exposure which plaintiffs alleged caused serious injuries and demanded an amount in excess of seven figures. After filing Motions to Dismiss and attending a grueling half day mediation with Federal District Judge Vatti, the parties settled the matter for an undisclosed amount, well under the plaintiffs'' demand.
Bad faith law in New York has rarely been more relevant. David Gould will present a CLE program on best practices in the defense of bad faith claims at a New York State Bar Association CLE program on May 24. The program will explore the current state of Bad Faith law in New York, the impact of recent decisions, ethical considerations, the proposed legislation, and practice tips.
We are proud to share that five of our attorneys have been named 2022 Super Lawyers and Rising Stars in the NY Metro area and Upstate New York! This is a distinction reserved for a select group of attorneys - only five percent per state are named to Super Lawyers and 2.5 percent named to Rising Stars each year. Please join us in congratulating our colleagues on this honor.
Congratulations to our associate Nima Baratzadeh for his recent win in NY State Supreme Court in Rockland County. Nima won a threshold motion for our client.
Two of our associates, Alexandra Alvarez and Nima Baratzadeh obtained summary judgment dismissing the plaintiff's Complaint against our client, Charles W. Heath II, in Jennifer Stephan v. John Cozzali, Charles W. Heath II, L.I. Drag Racing Club, Corp, et al., venued in Morris County of the Superior Court of New Jersey.
Headline verdict amounts continue to rise, dragging up settlement values and turning claims scenarios into high-stakes negotiations. Alan Russo and Marie Castronuovo were part of a panel of insurance defense experts discussing the rise in nuclear verdicts at a DRI webinar in March. They discussed how new research and strategies are helping insurers to better assess, triage and limit their litigation liabilities, and how to counter an increasingly better funded, coordinated and sophisticated plaintiff's bar.
It''s that time of year - March Madness has come to the firm. We conducted a fun and informative CLE program for a client with a March Madness theme. The Russo & Gould team showed up in our college basketball finest, while presenting on defense of bad faith claims and best practices.
Congratulations to our partner, Florina Altshiler, for being included on Lawline''s list of Top Women Faculty for 2021. This is not the first time Florina has received this honor; she was also on the 2016, 2019 and 2020 lists. Lawline compiles this annual list to highlight these womens'' contributions to the legal community and to celebrate their accomplishments. Florina made this year''s list due to two of her programs, Conducting Cross and Direct Examination of Expert Witnesses at Trial and Preparing to Climb Everest: A Guide to Trial Preparation. Both were incredibly well-received. One commenter even pointed out, "Absolutely excellent. It was a privilege to attend this presentation. Instruction and presentation top-notch. Excellent insight shared by a truly great trial counsel."
David Gould will be a panelist for the Defense Association of New York CLE program, "Defense of Bad Faith Claims - Best Practices." The program will be held online on January 27 at 5:30pm, and is geared toward both experienced and newly admitted attorneys. Participants will earn two (2) CLE credits. Learn more and register at this link on the DANY website.
Dan Schiavetta is presenting at a National Business Institute program, "Litigating Civil Cases in New York From Start to Finish." The program will be held January 18, 2022 at 9:00 am. At Russo & Gould, Dan focuses on nursing home and adult residential facility defense, and has wide experience in appellate and insurance coverage litigation. This online seminar features veteran attorneys who will provide you with real-world insights and concrete instruction. From initial filings to trial, uncover best practices that will help you work your way to a favorable case resolution. Learn how to be an effective advocate for your clients in civil proceedings.
Congratulations to our Senior Associate, Audrey Medd, for winning a Motion to Dismiss for one of our firm''s clients. Audrey appeared for oral argument in Connecticut Superior Court, Judicial District of New Haven before the Honorable Justice James Wilson Abrams where she successfully argued the motion in favor of our client.
So many are still dealing with food insecurity. Russo & Gould has made contributions to Feeding America and City Harvest this holiday season in honor of our clients and friends. Thank you for your support these past 25 years; we look forward to continuing to work together.