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The New Year Marks New Changes Regarding the Admission of Records Produced by an Opposing Party

On August 28, 2018, a change to article 45 of the CPLR was enacted after being proposed by the Chief Administrative Judge and being recommended by the Advisory Committee on Civil Practice.  That change, involving the admission of opposing party documents, is set to go into effect on January 1, 2019. The new CPLR §4540(a) is designed to make the admission of documents created by an opposing party admissible without going through additional steps.
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Court of Appeals Finds Statements Made During Administrative Proceeding are Not Protected by an Absolute Privilege

In New York State, a defamatory statement is defined as “a false statement that is published or made known to a third party – deliberately or with negligence – without the knowledge or consent of the subject.  Under the doctrine of defamation, an individual who makes such statement may claim a defense by proving either that (1) the statement is true; (2) that the statement was an expression of pure opinion; or (3) that the statement is protected by an absolute privilege.  In the case of Stega v. New York Downtown Hosp., the New York Court of Appeals determined that defamatory statements made during an administrative proceeding are not protected by an absolute privilege.
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Court of Appeals Decides No-Fault Claims Against a Self-Insurer are Subject to a Three-Year Statute of Limitations

In the case of Contact Chiropractic P.C. v. New York City Tr. Auth., the New York Court of Appeals held that a three-year statute of limitations applies to no-fault cases involving a self-insurer.  The case involved a passenger injured in an accident while riding in a bus that was owned by the New York Transit Authority (NYCT). NYCT was self-insured, and therefore, did not have no-fault insurance coverage.  After the plaintiff provided services to the injured passenger, they assigned their right to collect first-party benefits from NYCT.  The Plaintiff then brought the action seeking reimbursement for outstanding invoices.
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Bullying and School Districts

Bullying is a common problem that occurs in our nation’s school systems. Bullying can be defined as using physical strength and action or words to intimidate another and instill a sense of discomfort and fear. Bullying can be done in person, over the phone, or via the internet. There isn’t an age limit for bullying; it occurs throughout all stages of life, yet peaks when enrolled in an elementary or secondary educational institution. Over time, the question that has been posed is, “what can school districts do to prevent bullying?” Continue reading “Bullying and School Districts”

Court of Appeals Rules Plaintiff Can Be Granted Partial Summary Judgment, Regardless of Own Liability

On April 3, 2018, the New York Court of Appeals ruled that, in accordance with the CPLR, a plaintiff need not “demonstrate the absence of his comparative negligence to be entitled to partial summary judgment as to a defendant’s liability.” Continue reading “Court of Appeals Rules Plaintiff Can Be Granted Partial Summary Judgment, Regardless of Own Liability”

IG: Husband and Wife Fraudulently Collected Workers’ Compensation Benefits After Smashing Customer’s Car

The owner of a window tinting business in Rockland County, New York, and his wife were arrested for allegedly defrauding the state Workers’ Compensation system after his wife took out a customer’s car on a joyride, getting into an accident, then claiming the crash happened while she was working. Continue reading “IG: Husband and Wife Fraudulently Collected Workers’ Compensation Benefits After Smashing Customer’s Car”

Court of Appeals Rules: Specific Contract Language Governs Reinsurance Liability Cap

The issue that has recently plagued the insurance world is the question of whether New York State law requires in its insurance contracts a rule of construction or presumption regarding the contract’s liability limitations and caps on the reinsurance available to cover defense costs. Continue reading “Court of Appeals Rules: Specific Contract Language Governs Reinsurance Liability Cap”

Facebook Posts Can Serve as Important Information in Head Injury Case

The New York State Court of Appeals recently ruled that information from an injury victim’s private Facebook account can be treated as information used in a legal action and, as such, the victim may have to offer that information to the opposing party in court. Continue reading “Facebook Posts Can Serve as Important Information in Head Injury Case”

New York Court of Appeals Says No to Physician-Assisted Suicide

On September 7th, the New York State Court of Appeals determined that the New York State Constitution does not provide an individual the right to a physician-assisted suicide.  The decision restricts a mentally competent and terminally ill person from obtaining a prescription for a lethal dose of drugs from a physician intended to be taken to cause death. Continue reading “New York Court of Appeals Says No to Physician-Assisted Suicide”

First Department Finds Case Not Time-Barred Because of Continuous Treatment

In the case of Lewis v. Rutkovsky, the First Department was asked to review the continuous treatment doctrine as it applied to a patient who brought a lawsuit against her primary care physician.  The plaintiff alleged that her primary care physician failed to detect, diagnose, and treat her brain tumor.  As a result of the doctor’s failure to diagnose, the plaintiff underwent brain surgery that left her legally blind.  The First Department reviewed the continuous treatment doctrine in determining whether or not the lawsuit should be time-barred.

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