Melito & Adolfsen P.C.
U.S. and International Litigation Firm New York City And The World

November 2014 Archives

New York Court of Appeals rules that the cyber-bullying law was too broad and vague

Cyber bullying is a painful concern to parents all across America. In New York, a county enacted a cyber-bullying law intended to stop these electronic communications. The law defined cyber-bullying as electronic communications intended to inflict harm on children with sexually explicit photographs, private or personal sexual information, and false sexual information. The court refused to construe the statute as narrowly as the county argued. In the Court's view: The Law covers communications aimed at adults and fictitious or corporate entities, even though the county legislature justified passage of the provision based on the detrimental effects that cyber-bullying has on school-aged children. People v. Marquan M. 

Beware of the possibility that jurors may be tweeting and blogging during trial--ignoring admonitions from the trial judge. One federal judge concludes posting tweets about the case during trial does not constitute talking about the case with others.

Many people cannot control their social media impulses and this is now becoming an issue during trials. Disregarding the court's instructions that jurors are not to discuss the case with anyone during the trial, there are reports of jurors blogging about their day-to-day experience as the trial proceeds.

Addressing an issue of first impression, Connecticut Supreme Court concludes that Insurance Guaranty Association is not estopped by the sins of its insolvent charge

In Connecticut Ins. Guaranty Association v. Joshua Drown, the Connecticut Supreme Court addressed, as an issue of first impression, whether an insurer's pre-insolvency breach of its duty to defend a claim during an underlying litigation estopped the plaintiff Connecticut Insurance Guaranty Association from contesting its obligation under the Guaranty Act to pay a claim under the insolvent insurer's policy.

NY Court of Appeals upholds $44 million contingency fee for 5 months work, concluding that to assess fairness would be "dangerous business"

The New York State Court of Appeals has ruled that a contingency fee agreement that netted Graubard Miller $44 million for five months' work was valid and enforceable. According to the court, the law firm took substantial risks by making the agreement with Alice Lawrence in January 2005, and the fact that the real estate matter on which it had long represented Lawrence unexpectedly settled in May 2005 did not make it unconscionable.