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Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Disbarred NY Lawyer Ordered to Pay $500,000 in Malpractice Lawsuit

Disbarred NY Lawyer Ordered to Pay $500,000 in Malpractice Lawsuit
The New York Law Journal by Nate Raymond - May 26, 2010

An attorney who was suspended and later disbarred for misappropriating client funds has been ordered to pay a former client nearly $500,000 in a malpractice case. A special referee in Manhattan Supreme Court ordered Howard L. Blau to pay the sum to Donald Glassman, a former Barnard College employee who had been charged with third-degree rape and sought counsel from Mr. Blau. Mr. Glassman was found guilty. He then fired Mr. Blau, brought on new counsel and was acquitted. Mr. Blau did not appear in the malpractice case, and the referee ordered judgment on default. Mr. Glassman will now seek to collect the sum, said his lawyer, Kenneth F. McCallion at McCallion & Associates in Manhattan. The decision in Glassman v. Blau, 111703/2008, by the referee, Nicholas Doyle, has given Mr. Glassman "some vindication with regard to his claims of being wrongfully and improperly and negligently represented by Mr. Blau," Mr. McCallion added. "He hasn't quite been able to get his life back, and probably never will," Mr. McCallion said. However, the written decision and a judgment against Mr. Blau gives Mr. Glassman "some minimal satisfaction," Mr. McCallion said. A call to the last known number for Mr. Blau found it had been disconnected. He did not respond to an e-mail seeking comment.The judgment would be the latest in a string of problems facing Mr. Blau. The Appellate Division, First Department, suspended him in February 2008 after he allegedly misappropriated nearly $764,000 from three clients' funds. When Mr. Blau continued to practice law despite the suspension, the First Department disbarred him in October 2009. Other default judgments in suits by ex-clients have accumulated since the suspension. Mr. Blau was hired in 2007 by Mr. Glassman, a former archivist at Barnard College who faced assault, battery and rape charges based on claims by his ex-wife, according to Mr. Doyle's decision. Mr. Blau was also retained to represent Mr. Glassman in his divorce. In his complaint, Mr. Glassman said he hired Mr. Blau because he claimed he was "the best criminal defense attorney in New York," with experience in, among other things, domestic violence cases. In reality, Mr. Blau had never handled a domestic violence case, according to Mr. Glassman's complaint. Mr. Blau also had been the subject of at least five malpractice suits from 1998 to 2006 for, among other things, negligence in handling criminal matters, misrepresenting his qualifications and failing to properly investigate cases, the complaint said. Mr. Blau did not prepare for the trial, according to the referee's decision. He did not interview witnesses, nor keep in contact with Mr. Glassman in the run up to trial. At trial, Mr. Blau did not cross-examine witnesses and failed to put on a case. Though he told the jury Mr. Glassman would testify on his own behalf, he never did. In October 2007, the jury found Mr. Glassman guilty of rape in the third degree and two misdemeanors of prohibited contact. Mr. Glassman hired two new lawyers, solo Robert J. Feldman and Mark M. Baker at Brafman & Associates, for $55,000, who were able to get the verdict set aside. Mr. Glassman was retried, represented by a court-appointed lawyer and was acquitted of all charges. Mr. Glassman filed an arbitration request for attorney's fees against Mr. Blau in November 2007. The arbitration panel awarded Mr. Glassman $32,500 in August 2008. Days later, Mr. Glassman brought the malpractice suit, seeking $10 million as a result of legal fees, loss of employment and pain and suffering. Mr. Glassman had lost his $48,700-a-year job at Barnard after his conviction and briefly landed a job at the American Civil Liberties Union until his employers learned of his conviction. In March 2009, Mr. Glassman was hired by the New York Grant Company, a consulting firm run by Ann G. Kayman, who practiced with Mr. Blau under the name Blau, Kayman & Barrows. Ms. Kayman did not respond to a request for comment. Mr. Doyle, the referee in the malpractice action, last week ruled that Mr. Glassman was entitled to $496,302 in legal fees, lost earnings and lost future earnings. But the referee found that while alleged emotional and psychological injuries were "understandable," relief was not available in a malpractice case. Mr. Doyle's decision is final and will not need approval of Justice Lucy Billings, Mr. McCallion said.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

lawyers suck

Anonymous said...

that is why lawyers should be reqired to have malpractice insurance.

Anonymous said...

Saint Andrew, Patron saint of Crooked Lawyers and Judges, consoles the fearful among his beneficiaries; "this is just a show trial to fool the suckers that crooked lawyers are punished with malpractice payouts." He explains,"he still escaped because the DA could have charged him with fraud and larceny, but he pulled his NY lawyers "get out of jail free card." "Worse this foolish lawyer didn't follow the rules and share his loot with my treasury. "It's pay to get away;" and "now is the time to pay in."

Anonymous said...

I wonder how much Bernadette E. Lupinetti, Esq. makes for every child she sells to be sexually exploited in child custody cases or any other case. Hey, Cuomo are you still keeping the Lupinetti's under you armpit to help them from been investigate it?

Anonymous said...

Hang all the lawyers, that's the only way to be free of these leaches.

Anonymous said...

Oh wow, Referee Nicolas Doyle ruled on my Traverse Hearing, it went to Judge Doris Ling-Cohan for a final Order and Decision,in the decision and order it allowed me to re-serve Defendant Allen Isaac "in the interest of justice". My adversaries appealed the Court's decision to the Appellate Court, First Department...and they won..

Luisa C. Esposito vs. Allen H. Isaac, et.als. 109446/2006-502 TSN 2008

Anonymous said...

St Andrew poster and joker, you could sell a book with your comments and make millions!!

Anonymous said...

see what we mean, the lawyers do all this sick shit, keep you in court for years with their Racketeering Bullshit and they already have their whole scam worked out.........
shoot to kill and bury them out back!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

take your bullshit Mafia trials and Racketeering shit and stick it up your ass!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

keep naming these bastards they will get marked!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

who in the Appelate Court did that?

Anonymous said...

just reappeal it under Louisa Espositostein and see how you win!

Anonymous said...

To the above comment @ 8:17 PM..Who is Louisa Espositostein? What case are you talking about to reappeal?

Anonymous said...

Special Referee Nicholas Doyle is a Stand up Guy, very compentent,no political agenda,extremely,extremely sharp in a hearing. This guy should be a NY Supreme court Judge!!

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