Aug 10th, 2015

FKB’s Andrew S. Kowlowitz and Brandon H. Weinstein obtain dismissal of a legal malpractice claim arising from an underlying failed partnership agreement

This legal malpractice action arises from a failed partnership involving the purchase and operation of a liquor store.  FKB’s client, a Manhattan-based attorney, assisted with the liquor license application.  When it became apparent that the New York State Liquor Authority would not grant the store a liquor license, one of the partners – who had a documented criminal background – agreed to voluntarily remove himself from the liquor license application.

Thereafter, he commenced this action against his former partners, and his lawyer, FKB’s client.   The Plaintiff alleged that FKB’s client interfered with his partnership agreement by wrongfully inducing the Plaintiff to remove himself from the liquor license application.  In the Complaint, two causes of action were brought against FKB’s client: (1) Tortious Interference with Contract; and (2) Negligence.

FKB filed a pre-answer motion to dismiss the Complaint pursuant to CPLR 3211 on the grounds that the causes of action asserted in the Complaint were insufficiently plead and could not be adequately stated against FKB’s client.  In his Decision and Order, Justice Wooten (New York County Supreme Court) dismissed the Complaint as against FKB’s client pursuant to CPLR 3211 (a)(7).

If you have any questions about this decision, or the defense of attorneys in general, please contact Andrew S. Kowlowitz or Brandon H. Weinstein.