Bruno and Gurman Obtain Pre-Answer Dismissal of Legal Malpractice Claim

March 25, 2020

Jon Bruno and Amanda Gurman obtained dismissal of a legal malpractice suit on a pre-answer motion to dismiss.

The plaintiff commenced the action alleging the law firm committed legal malpractice, fraud, breach of fiduciary duty and breach of contract in connection with the firm’s representation of the plaintiff in a personal injury action, in which the firm was appointed as defense counsel for the plaintiff by an insurance company.

The plaintiff alleged that the law firm failed to adequately protect the plaintiff’s interests in the personal injury lawsuit and colluded with the  insurer so that the insurance company could deny coverage to the plaintiff.  In particular, the plaintiff alleged that the law firm:

1.        provided information to the insurer to assist their denial of coverage;

2.        failed to dispute the coverage denial on behalf of plaintiff; and

3.        improperly moved to withdraw as plaintiff’s counsel after the coverage denial was issued.

Bruno and Gurman argued that dismissal of this action was appropriate because (1) none of the conduct alleged in the complaint was a deviation from the standard of care, as communication with the insurance company was standard practice and required of insurance defense counsel; and (2) plaintiff had not alleged any proximately caused damages because the insurance company would have denied coverage irrespective of any communication from the law firm.

The Supreme Court, Bronx County, agreed and dismissed the action in its entirety against the law firm.

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