Results

Firm secures judgment against a contractor’s corporation

Mark L. Schuh, Associate

After suing a contractor for a defective construction job, our client obtained a judgment against a contractor’s corporation.  She could not collect on the judgment, however, because the contractor had abandoned the corporation and formed a new one.  The property owner then hired the collection team at CMMR to enforce the judgment.  The collection team at CMMR pursued the owner individually as well as the new corporation alleging fraudulent conveyance and alter ego.  CMMR was able to pierce the corporate veil and obtain a judgment against the owner, individually, and the new corporation.  During that process, however, the owner abandoned the new corporation and formed yet another corporation.  In apparent response to CMMR’s aggressive, but ethical, enforcement techniques, the owner of the corporation filed for bankruptcy under chapter 7 of the bankruptcy code.  The bankruptcy petition identified over $400,000 in alleged debt including numerous arising from failed construction projects.  CMMR, however, was able to provide the bankruptcy trustee with documentary evidence to support the trustee’s application to dismiss the bankruptcy petition and deny the owner a discharge.  Shortly thereafter, the collection team at CMMR was able to negotiate and collect a sizeable settlement with the owner in excess of the amount of the original judgment.


Firm wins summary judgment of behalf of corrections officers

Successfully obtained summary judgment on behalf of corrections officers dismissing inmate plaintiff’s §1983 civil rights claims.  Inmate plaintiff alleged that corrections officers violated his First Amendment rights when they limited his participation in congregate religious services during a period of disciplinary lock-in.  The United States District Court held that the corrections officers has a legitimate penological interest in restricting inmate plaintiff’s participation in congregate religious services during his period of disciplinary lock-in since the inmate plaintiff had been placed on disciplinary lock-in for passing and possessing contraband during those same congregate religious services he sought to attend.


Auto accident settled through mediation with an award of $220,000

The firm recently settled auto accident case through mediation thus avoiding cost and delay of trial of this significant personal injury case involving rotator cuff tear and herniated disc both requiring operative intervention. Defense challenged contention that the accident caused the injuries pointing to prior complaints and treatment as well as findings on operative report. We were able convince the defendants attorney and insurance carrier, through detailed analysis of medical issues, that the likelihood was that a jury would agree with our position that the injuries were indeed connected to the accident and that they faced significant risk proceeding to trial. The case was settled for $220,000. The client was made whole and was extremely satisfied with the representation afforded him through the firm, paralegal Lori O'Boy and principal, Joseph Catania Jr. Esq.


Successes And Verdicts

  • An individual plaintiff sued a major corporate entity for injuries sustained when she allegedly slipped and fell on the defendant's property.
  • Our attorneys, Paul S. Ernenwein and Lia E. Fierro, filed a motion for summary judgment arguing that judgment should be entered in favor of the Defendant because, among other things, it was an out-of-possession landlord at the time of the incident and it had delegated its duty to maintain the premises to its tenant via a comprehensive lease arrangement.
  • The Court sided in favor of the Defendant, preventing the expense of further litigation and ultimately shielding Defendant from potential exposure to upwards of $1MM in damages

  • Recently Joe successfully concluded a recovery for his client who, while working on his delivery route, tripped in a depression in a homeowners sidewalk, seriously injuring his ankle. The walk was repaired almost immediately after the accident and before the client had retained Joe for his case. The homeowner contended in sworn testimony that the "depression" was minor and not dangerous. In order, to prove the significance of the hole Joe first secured court permission to do core sampling of the repaired area so as to demonstrate the depth of the hole before the repair. However, at the same time he pursued the results of investigation that had been done by the plaintiff’s government employer. That investigation disclosed photos take immediately after the accident of a hole several inches deep. With this evidence the sampling was no longer needed and Joe was able to show that the defendant had lied about the extent of the defect in the sidewalk. The defendant quickly settled the case.
  • When Joe’s clients, owners of an historically significant mansion contracted with a roofer to repair the slate roof on their mansion they thought they had found the right contractor for the job as he appeared competent, and sensitive to the historic details of the home. Instead the work was deficient, incomplete and allowed extensive water damage to the home. They turned to Joe for help. Suit was brought against the contractor for the cost of correction of the deficient work and the consequential damage to the home from the resulting leaks. Through Joe’s efforts the matter was put into suit, experts retained to prove the deficiencies in the work and the resulting damages and the case moved toward reckoning of the contractor. Ultimately, the matter was concluded by elimination of the claims of the contractor and positive recovery of funds by the homeowner. Joe’s knowledge of the construction field was critical to putting together the necessary proof to achieve this result.
  • Successfully concluded a motor vehicle wrongful death claim securing full value recovery (1.4 million) for pain and suffering and loss to the decedent's estate of his income against a major over the road hauler. Mediation was utilized to achieve this result within a short time after the tragic accident.
  • Achieved successful result through ADR for businessman accused of breaching joint venture agreement for the development of real property.
  • Obtained money judgment of over $200,000 for specialty realtor claiming commission for the sale of a car dealership and associated real property.

  • Following over 3 years of litigation, successfully opposed an appeal brought by Plaintiff Taxi Cab Company before the Second Department, Appellate Division; securing dismissal of a lawsuit brought against a local municipality's newly enacted taxi cab ordinance.

  • Obtained jury verdict and Judgment in excess of 2.4 million dollars in Estate and land development litigation.
  • Secured settlement of over 1.5 million dollars in contested estate and fiduciary litigation.
  • Secured dismissal of federal discrimination and conspiracy claims in Federal District Court action venued the U.S. Federal Court in Manhattan.
  • Secured settlement of $425,000 in contested commercial foreclosure action.

  • Successfully obtained summary judgment on behalf of county dismissing county employee's federal discrimination and retaliation claims

  • Successfully obtained summary judgment on behalf of a radiologist where claims concerning the interpretation of a PET scan were dismissed.
  • Successfully obtained summary judgment on behalf of a radiologist where claims concerning the interpretation of a chest x-ray and alleged delay in diagnosing lung cancer were dismissed
  • Won a jury trial on behalf of a radiologist where claims concerning the interpretation of a CT scan.
  • Successfully obtained discontinuance of case on behalf of neurologist just before trial in case involving claims related to the diagnosis and treatment of a stroke.
  • Successfully concluded a motor vehicle claim securing full value recovery ($250,000) for pain and suffering

Firm Secures Major Settlement For Injured Operation Engineer

The case presented a real conundrum. The client sustained a devastating ankle fracture which required major surgery to piece together a joint that, in the words of his treating physician, looked as if "he had stepped on a grenade". The operative site where screws and wires were used to hold the bones of the ankle back in place, unfortunately, became infected, requiring massive doses of antibiotics delivered through a port in the client's vein. Ultimately, he was left with a completely disabling injury which prevented him from ever working again as a heavy equipment operator.
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Connecticut Realtor Receives Commission Earned

The firm successfully concluded a long and, unfortunately, drawn out litigation in Ulster County on behalf of Connecticut realtor for his commission on the sale of an automotive franchise dealership. The defendant, a Delaware attorney, resisted every step of the way raising issues over sufficiency of process and jurisdiction, to the amount of the commission due, forcing the parties to a bench trial. The Decision recently rendered by the Court confirmed the firm's clients position and awarded close to $200,000.00 in commission. Critical issues in the case involved expert testimony concerning the usual and customary rate of commission on similar transactions. From utilizing the services of a nationally recognized expert specializing in the purchase and sale of automotive dealerships in order to establish the case.


Firm Wins Settlement For A Pit - Bull Attack On A Child

Joseph Catania, Senior Partner, successfully concluded a young child's claim for damages for horrific personal injuries sustained when he was the victim of an unprovoked pit-bull attack. The firm was able to secure the full insurance policy limits for the child. Additionally, the firm set up a trust for the benefit of the child, where substantial proceeds of fund raising efforts on the part of his family were placed enabling those funds to be free of any governmental liens and other creditors and to be used solely for the benefit of the young man, his education, future medical care and surgeries and so forth.

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Dismissal of Suit Against Client for Alleged Fall on Carpeted Stairway

Hobart J. Simpson successfully obtained a dismissal of suit against our client, the defendant-landlord, in a personal injury matter. The plaintiff allegedly fell on an interior, carpeted staircase of an apartment she leased from the defendant owner. We successfully argued that our client did not create or have constructive notice of the alleged dangerous condition of the carpet. Furthermore, we successfully argued that the plaintiff's "expert" was not qualified to provide expert opinion evidence in this case to rebut our client's entitlement to judgment.


Jury Finds School District Properly Supervised Students

Steven I. Milligram, Senior Partner, represented a local school district concerning allegations of not properly supervising students.

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Richard M. Mahon secures jury verdict in Manhattan Federal Court

Richard M. Mahon, Senior Partner, was successful in securing a jury verdict in Manhattan Federal Court in favor of the Defendants after a three-day jury trial. Three Muslim inmates sued the County and its Jail Chaplain alleging violation of their First, Fifth, Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment Rights, claiming infringement of their rights of religious freedom and expression within the Rockland County Jail. The County and the Jail Chaplain steadfastly maintained that no discrimination nor infringement of Constitutional rights had occurred. The Jury agreed and returned a no-cause defense verdict on all claims.


Firm Obtains $1.15 Million Dollar Settle

Steven I Milligram, of the firm's personal injury team won a $1.15 million settlement in December 2004 from the driver/owner of a car and a municipality for injuries, emotional trauma and death sustained as the result of a serious car accident. The car accident occurred during snowy and slick driving conditions. The plaintiffs, passengers in the vehicle in question, contended; that the accident resulted from both the improper operation of the vehicle by the driver under the existing conditions and defects in the pitch and crowning of the road, which contributed to the driver losing control and crashing into a tree. Please note that the result of this matter does not guarantee or predict a similar outcome with respect to any future matter.

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Firm Obtains $2.55 Million Dollar Settle

Richard F. Liberth, and the firm's personal injury team obtained a $2.55 million dollar settlement for two clients who were injured after a car crossed-over the line and crashed head-on into their vehicle.


The successful defense of Air Freight

Jay F. Jason reports the recent successful defense of a major Air Freight and Logistics provider in an arbitration proceeding. In that matter a former agent, whose multi-year contract was terminated for service issues, sued the firm's client for $12.34 million, citing lost income and failure to make payments to it over a number of years. After six days of hearing, the arbitrator awarded the agent less than $200,000. This award was less than the client had withheld from the agent for his non-performance.

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A Malpractice Claim Was Dropped

A recent claim of malpractice against a physician was dropped after intense trial preparation and investigation. Joseph A. Catania, Jr. reports that the plaintiff in a medical malpractice suit had claimed medical negligence against his client, a noted Westchester County spine surgeon and others. The trial was scheduled to begin in Ulster County Supreme Court but just before jury selection, the plaintiff discontinued the action and abandoned all claims against the physician. The defense had lined up important experts to assist in the defense of the claims and had conducted intense background investigation. The trial preparations uncovered evidence that, contrary to the plaintiff's claims of inability to work, she was working while also collecting workman's compensation.

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Defeat of Claim of Medical Malpractice

In the representation of a hospital, a medical group and an individual physician, the firm defeated a claim of medical malpractice. Plaintiff, in this case was a 58 year old female who presented to the Hospital with an extremely low sodium level. After several days, she experienced an unexpected and unanticipated increase in her body's chemistry, which eventually lead to her death. Plaintiff's had asked the jury to award them nearly $20 million dollars, but received nothing. The jury returned the verdict in favor of our client after 28 minutes of deliberation.

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Firm Obtains Discontinuance of Claim

The firm was successful in obtaining a discontinuance of a malpractice case against one of our clients prior to trial. Plaintiff alleged medical malpractice for an ankle injury that was subsequently dismissed based on our attorney's pre-trial research extensive preparation.

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Firm Obtains $1.2 Million Dollar Settle

The firm obtained a personal injury award for one of our clients of $1.2 million dollars. The client, a 19 year old passenger in a vehicle that was in an accident, sustained brain injuries.

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Firm Obtains Payback of Loan & Interest

The City of Newburgh, represented by our firm, was granted a default judgment in its case against a developer who failed to pay back a loan given by the City. The developers could not show there was a reasonable excuse for not answering the City's lawsuit. The result was the developer has to pay back the loan as well as interest amounting in excess of $1.25 million.

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Record Setting Verdict Upheld by Court

On August 28, 2009, Catania, Mahon, Milligram & Rider, PLLC obtained a $977,544 verdict for an 84 year old woman who had been badly injured after slipping and falling in the parking lot of a commercial premises located in Monticello, New York. As a result of her fall, our client suffered a fracture of her femur (commonly known as the thigh bone) which required multiple surgeries which left this vibrant and active woman severely impaired.

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Firm Obtains Summary Judgment on Behalf of Corrections Officers

Successfully obtained summary judgment on behalf of corrections officers dismissing inmate plaintiff’s §1983 civil rights claims. Inmate plaintiff alleged that corrections officers violated his First Amendment rights when they limited his participation in congregate religious services during a period of disciplinary lock-in. The United States District Court held that the corrections officers has a legitimate penological interest in restricting inmate plaintiff’s participation in congregate religious services during his period of disciplinary lock-in since the inmate plaintiff had been placed on disciplinary lock-in for passing and possessing contraband during those same congregate religious services he sought to attend.


Joe Catania Obtains Settlement for Auto Accident Victim

The firm recently settled auto accident case through mediation thus avoiding cost and delay of trial of this significant personal injury case involving rotator cuff tear and herniated disc both requiring operative intervention. Defense challenged contention that the accident caused the injuries pointing to prior complaints and treatment as well as findings on operative report. We were able convince the defendants attorney and insurance carrier, through detailed analysis of medical issues, that the likelihood was that a jury would agree with our position that the injuries were indeed connected to the accident and that they faced significant risk proceeding to trial. The case was settled for $220,000. The client was made whole and was extremely satisfied with the representation afforded him through the firm, paralegal Lori O'Boy and principal, Joseph Catania Jr. Esq.