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Congratulations to Lori Shapiro, President of the Association of Healthcare Risk Managers of New York

By VBPNP In the News

VBPNP is thrilled to congratulate our partner, Lori Shapiro, who was installed last Friday as President of the Association of Healthcare Risk Managers of New York (“AHRMNY”). Ms. Shapiro will lead the premier healthcare risk management organization in the State of New York. AHRMNY members include the majority of risk managers at New York hospitals and medical institutions, as well as leaders of the insurance and malpractice defense community.

Ms. Shapiro was overwhelmingly elected by the AHRMNY membership and has already made a positive mark on the organization.  Under her leadership, the Annual Conference was moved to City Winery at Chelsea Piers, where it immediately sold out with 250+ attendees. VBPNP has been and will continue to be a major sponsor and supporter of AHRMNY.  

Dylan Braverman and Tyler Fiorello Obtain Pre-Answer Dismissal of Radiologist Based on COVID-19 EDTPA Immunity

By VBPNP In the News

Dylan Braverman and Tyler Fiorello moved to dismiss the claims against their client, a radiologist employed by a major metropolitan area academic research hospital. The patient presented to the Emergency Department with flu-like symptoms on January 10, 2021 (the second wave of COVID-19 in the NYC Metropolitan area). The ED attending suspected COVID-19 and ordered a series of tests including an X-ray. Plaintiff alleged that the radiologist and other parties missed evidence of lung cancer. The VBPNP COVID-19 Team moved to dismiss pre-answer based on the COVID-19 Emergency or Disaster Treatment Protection Act (“EDTPA”) immunity. The ED attending signed an affidavit detailing the impact of COVID-19 on this patient’s care while she was in the ED. As a result, the court found that the radiologist was entitled to dismissal under the EDTPA immunity. The court also found plaintiff unable to sustain a claim of gross negligence. As a result, dismissal was granted.

Jason J. Lavery and William H. Gagas secure appellate victory from the Appellate Division, First Department

By VBPNP In the News

Jason J. Lavery and William H. Gagas secured a substantial appellate victory from the Appellate Division, First Department, affirming summary judgment for our clients and dismissing the entirety of plaintiffs’ $30+ million property damage claim.

Jason and William defended one of the City’s largest property owners in a lawsuit brought by a neighboring landowner to one of our client’s commercial properties.  Plaintiff was a substantial real estate developer, who alleged that one of his properties sustained over $30 million in damages due to water mitigation efforts at our client’s building.  Specifically, plaintiff alleged that the sump pump system at our client’s property was too powerful and caused fine soils and particulates to be removed from underneath plaintiff’s property, resulting in differential settlement and substantial physical damage to the building.  Plaintiffs also alleged that our client improperly underpinned their structure almost 100 years ago.

Over almost 9 years of contentious litigation against a respected Manhattan construction litigation firm and an AmLaw 200 law firm, our team developed an unassailable factual record demonstrating the alleged damage was caused by the plaintiffs’ own failure to maintain their building, and that our client was otherwise legally entitled to protect their own property from water intrusion. 

No stone was left unturned, as they pursued records and testimony from numerous non-party contractors and witnesses who performed work at plaintiffs’ building, which provided crucial evidence in establishing our defense.  They also obtained turn of the century records to establish our lack of liability for plaintiffs’ underpinning claims.

Bruce M. Brady Secures a Defense Verdict

By VBPNP In the News

On April 5, 2023, Bruce Brady secured a unanimous defense verdict in a medical malpractice case tried before Justice George Nolan in the Supreme Court Suffolk County.

The plaintiffs alleged that our client, a physician assistant working in a family practice, failed to appreciate the symptoms of an impending stroke in a 46-year-old woman and failed to immediately call an ambulance and refer her to a hospital for a complete workup.  Instead, the physician assistant merely provided the patient with a prescription for an outpatient CT scan.  The following day, the patient suffered a massive stroke that left her severely disabled.

Mr. Brady successfully argued that the physician assistant, despite the fact that he did not document his recommendation, advised the patient to go to the hospital, but the patient refused because she and her family had a cruise planned two  days later. The jury accepted the defense position and found no deviation from the standard of care.


Vincent Nagler Secures a Jury Verdict

By VBPNP In the News

On February 2,2023, Vincent Nagler secured a unanimous defense jury verdict before Judge Rolf Thorsen, Supreme Court Rockland County.

This wrongful death case involved a decedent that suffered from diabetes and end stage renal disease.  The plaintiff claimed that the decedent should not have been discharged from the emergency room after presenting with an open wound on his right foot. Plaintiff argued that the decedent had a diabetic foot wound which required immediate hospitalization and intravenous antibiotics.

The decedent subsequently returned to the hospital five days later and ultimately required an amputation of his right foot and left leg before he expired.

Mr. Nagler successfully argued that the decedent’s surgical interventions and death were the result of ongoing disease process, which included severe peripheral vascular disease, and not any deviation from the standard of care.  

Mamie Stathatos-Fulgieri Secures a Defense Verdict

By VBPNP In the News

Congratulations to partner, Mamie Stathatos-Fulgieri, on her recent unanimous defense verdict on behalf of her obstetrician-gynecologist client in Queens County Supreme Court.  

The case involved an elderly woman who experienced post-menopausal bleeding and suspected uterine cancer, requiring an endometrial biopsy. During the biopsy, the uterus was perforated and an infection followed, necessitating an exploratory laparotomy, total abdominal hysterectomy and bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy.  Mamie successfully argued this was a known and accepted risk of the procedure, despite plaintiff’s contention that the doctor went past the uterine wall during the biopsy and failed to recognize the perforation and timely treat it. Mamie effectively contended that during the procedure, the plaintiff did not offer any complaints to alert the doctor that there was any complication, and she was noted to have tolerated the procedure well.  The jury appreciated the argument and returned a unanimous defense verdict in favor of Mamie’s client.

#trialcounsel, #defenseverdict, #medicalmalpractice; #effectivelegalrepresentation

Thomas P. Jaffa Secures Summary Judgment Win

By VBPNP In the News

On December 6, 2022, Thomas P. Jaffa secured summary judgment in favor of his electrical contractor client and defeated the third-party plaintiff’s motion as to the client in Supreme Court, Suffolk County.  Plaintiff’s Labor Law action alleged a fall from a scaffold as a result of the scaffold wheel becoming lodged into an opening on the floor. 

The Court found there was no showing in the record that the client controlled the activities of the plaintiff on the project.  Therefore, any claim that they were negligent pursuant to the Labor law and thus required to indemnify the third-party plaintiff must be dismissed. 

With respect to contractual indemnification, the Court agreed with Mr. Jaffa that to require indemnification, the Court would have to speculate who was responsible for the work giving rise to the injuries.  The plaintiff did not know and could not identify the hole through photographs.  Third-party plaintiff could not demonstrate who performed the alleged work.  Further, third-party plaintiff having failed to demonstrate any of the prime contractors’ (including the client) responsibility, third-party plaintiff asked the Court to find that the injury arose from each contractor because they worked in the room.  The Court correctly held that there is no provision in the contract that allows for this and third-party plaintiff did not cite any legal precedence for same.  As such, third-party plaintiff’s motion for summary judgment as to contractual and common-law indemnification and contribution was denied and the Court granted the motion of our client dismissing the claims of contractual and common-law indemnification and contribution. 

Finally, the Court dismissed the cause of action for breach of contract as Mr. Jaffa submitted documentation demonstrating that our client had procured insurance as required. 

Neil Mascolo Secures a Summary Judgment Win

By VBPNP In the News

Partner, Neil Mascolo, wins summary judgment for Harleysville Insurance Company in a Declaratory Judgment action. Neil sought additional insured coverage for his client, a GC, in a Labor Law 240(1) and 241(6) case. The defendants were two separate insurers for two different subcontractors. The insurers denied the tender of coverage based on their argument that there was no written contractual requirement to procure additional insured coverage for the GC and owner. Both insurers also argued that their respective insureds played no role in the underlying accident. Neil successfully established that, not only was there a written contractual requirement for additional insured coverage for the GC and owners, but that both subcontractors played a role in the underlying accident. The court agreed and held that the defendant insurers owed both a defense and indemnity, on as primary noncontributory basis.

VBPNP Recognized by the Prestigious Super Lawyers®

By VBPNP In the News

VBPNP is very proud to announce that 19 of our attorneys have been recognized by the prestigious Super Lawyers®, a rating service which identifies those attorneys who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. No more than five percent of lawyers from a given state are selected. The following attorneys have been recognized as Super Lawyers in 2022: