Settlement of Litigation Found To Be A Waiver of Legal Malpractice Claim

On August 7, 2019, an appellate court reversed a Nassau County Supreme Court Justice and agreed to dismiss a legal malpractice claim based on a claim that the attorney's malpractice compelled it to settle a lawsuit. The underlying case was a claim for damage to a commercial building in Port Washington owned by the client against T-Mobile for $3,400,000. The damage to the building was caused by the installation of a T-Mobile cell tower that was deemed illegal and dangerous by the local municipality. The case settled at trial for approximately $90,000 of which $20,000 was paid by the project manager (hired by T-Mobile to oversee installation) who was inadvertently omitted from an amended complaint. The client claimed that the attorney's failure to reassert a claim against T-Mobile's project manager compelled them to accept an inadequate settlement. There was no discussion of T-Mobile's liability for the acts of the project manager it hired.

In addition to the alleged loss of recovering the whole $3,400,000, the client sought a return of $500,000 in legal fees paid to the attorney during the litigation. Relying on the trial transcript from the lawsuit complained of, the appellate court dismissed the legal malpractice claim finding that the client had testified under oath before the trial judge: 1) that they had discussed the settlement terms with their attorney (now the legal malpractice defendant) and understood its terms; 2) that they had no questions about the terms of the settlement; 3) that they entered into the settlement freely and without coercion or undue influence; and, 4) they were satisfied with their legal representation. Glenwayne Development Corp. v James J. Corbett, P.C., 2019 WL 3679644

Ronald C. Burke, Esq

Trial Attorney with 30+ Years of Experience Attorney Ronald C. Burke, Esq. has more than 30 years of experience and has focused his career on representing clients in cases involving personal injury, medical malpractice and legal malpractice. He is a seasoned trial lawyer and has won many seven-figure settlements and verdicts for his clients over the years, including many case victories listed among the largest in the history of the New York State. He has been featured in the news and is a regular lecturer for the New York County Lawyers Association, as well as having lectured before the New York State Bar Association. Ron is also an attorney with Kelner & Kelner, a New York personal injury law firm. Awards and Accolades Mr. Burke's awards and accolades are many. Among them, he has been included in New York Super Lawyers® each year since 2010, and he has received the highest-possible AV® Rating from Martindale-Hubbell®. Verdict Search, a part of the New York Law Journal, frequently recognizes his notable successes after winning some of the highest settlements and verdicts in past years. He was also featured in their list of the "Top New York Verdicts " and "Top New York Settlements." He is a member of the New York State Bar Association and is licensed to practice law in the U.S. District Court for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, as well as before the United States Supreme Court. When Attorney Burke is not handling legal malpractice cases, he is highly involved in the local community. He was a member of the Village of Rockville Centre Volunteer Fire Department, has served on the local school board and as Chairman of the local Zoning Board. Learn more about Attorney Burke and how he can skillfully handle your malpractice case by contacting the Law Offices of Ronald C. Burke, Esq. right away to schedule your complimentary case evaluation. Our firm is here to help! Contact a New York Legal Malpractice Attorney Our firm provides each client's case with thorough preparation and aggressive representation, ensuring that you win the best possible results for your case whether it is settled or goes to trial. As a seasoned trial lawyer, Mr. Burke can provide the strong and relentless representation you need to establish negligence in a legal malpractice case and to recover any damages you may have suffered. Our firm can recover compensation for pre-trial and trial malpractice, violations of fee arrangements, loss of income, pain and suffering, and much more. Contact us today!


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