New York Commercial Division Round-Up Blog

News & Updates on Cases Decided in the Commercial Division of the New York State Supreme Court

In the New York County Commercial Division, Justice David B. Cohen’s ruling in B&M Kingstone, LLC v. Mega Int’l Comm. Bank Ltd., 2022 NY Slip Op. 30481(U) (Sup. Ct. N.Y. Cnty. 2022) makes clear that New York courts can compel New York branches of non-US banks to disclose information relating to accounts or assets held by branches outside of the United States. It also demonstrates that obtaining such information through judgment enforcement procedures can prove difficult.
Continue Reading Judgment Creditors Beware: Moving For Contempt May Be Within Reach, But Difficult To Grasp

For a moment in March 2020, litigation stopped abruptly when the first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in New York. Within a matter of weeks, the New York State Courts shifted to online operations and, amazingly, the administration of justice continued virtually. Now, nearly two years later, the use of technology to conduct remote hearings and conferences is firmly entrenched in the legal community of New York, making it possible for judges, their support staff, attorneys and litigants to litigate from anywhere with Internet access.
Continue Reading The Changing Landscape of Electronic Service

In Chadha v. Wahedna, 2021 NY Slip Op. 50509(U) (Sup. Ct. N.Y. Cnty. 2021), Justice Ostrager of the New York County Commercial Division, dismissed Plaintiff Nilsa Chadha’s (“Plaintiff”) claims in their entirety due to Plaintiff’s execution of a general release.
Continue Reading New York Courts Continue to Enforce Broad General Releases, Even When Claims are Unforeseeable at the Time of Contract Execution

Tharunidhar Narravula et al v. Perosphere Technologies, Inc. et al, Index No. 900410-21, Supreme Court, Albany County

In Narravula v. Perosphere Tech., 2021 NY Slip Op 50510(U) (Sup. Ct. Albany Cnty. 2021), Justice Richard M. Platkin of the Albany County Commercial Division reinforced the textbook rule that that an individual who signs a contract as an agent for an undisclosed entity can be held personally liable on the contract if the agency relationship is not disclosed.
Continue Reading Signing Contracts as a Representative May Lead to Individual Liability

In “Governor Cuomo’s “Tolling” of New York Statutes of Limitation Has Ended, But What Did It Accomplish?”, we examined the debate surrounding whether Governor Cuomo’s Executive Order No. 202.8 and subsequent orders up to and including Executive Order No. 202.67, which extended Executive Order No. 202.8 (collectively, the “Executive Orders”), actually tolled New York statutes of limitation and other litigation deadlines for the period of March 20, 2020 through November 3, 2020, or merely suspended them.  For purposes of determining whether a claim or an appeal was timely filed, the answer to this question can have huge implications. 
Continue Reading The Second Department Weighs in on Tolling vs. Suspension of Statutes of Limitation Pursuant to Governor Cuomo’s COVID-era Executive Orders

Mac Parent LLC v. North American Elite Insurance Company, Index No. 906489/2020, Supreme Court, Albany County

On March 29, 2021, Justice Richard J. Platkin, of the Albany County Commercial Division, dismissed an insurance coverage dispute pursuant to CPLR § 3211(a)(4) due to another action that was pending in New York County, making clear that New York courts do not tolerate forum-shopping in the face of clear forum selection clauses.  Mac Parent LLC v. North American Elite Insurance Company, 2021 NY Slip Op 50268(U) (Sup. Ct. Albany Cnty 2021).
Continue Reading Albany Commercial Division Looks Beyond “First-In-Time” Analysis When Considering Dismissal Pursuant to CPLR § 3211(a)(4)

In Black Diamond Aviation Grp. LLC v. Spirit Avionics, Ltd., 70 Misc. 3d 823 (Sup. Ct. Suffolk Cnty. 2020), Justice James Hudson of the Suffolk County Commercial Division limited the reach of New York’s long-arm statute, CPLR 302, in granting a motion to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction where the contract at issue was negotiated via emails between Ohio and Connecticut and no business was performed in New York.  The plaintiff argued that the Court had jurisdiction over defendant pursuant to CPLR 302(a)(1), which provides, in pertinent part, that a party will be subject to the jurisdiction of New
Continue Reading Commercial Division Limits the Reach of New York’s Long-Arm Statute

COVID-19 has ushered in a new era for litigation in the Commercial Division. Here are the key developments litigants should be aware of.

Remote Appearances and No Paper Copies

In May 2020, e-filing in the Commercial Division resumed in earnest, with a few important differences from the status quo ante:

  • Most, if not all, appearances in the Commercial Division are proceeding remotely via Microsoft Teams. While the Commercial Division encourages parties to conduct virtual evidentiary hearings and non-jury trials, in-person jury trials will resume on March 22, 2021.
  • Per Administrative Order AO/267/20, paper copies of motions and other

  • Continue Reading The New Normal? An Update On Commercial Division Operations

    Statutes of limitation were “tolled” in New York by Executive Order No. 202.8, issued by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo on March 20, 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Over the next six-and-a-half months, that toll was renewed by further executive order every 30 days until, on October 4, 2020, the Governor issued Executive Order No. 202.67, announcing that the tolling order would be extended for only one more 30-day period—“until November 3, 2020, and after such date [statutes of limitation] will no longer be tolled.”
    Continue Reading Governor Cuomo’s “Tolling” of New York Statutes of Limitation Has Ended, But What Did It Accomplish?

    On Sunday, March 22, 2020, pursuant to Administrative Order AO/78/20 of Chief Administrative Judge Lawrence Marks, the New York Unified Court System took the drastic step of suspending all filings (both paper and e-filing) in all but a select few types of cases in all New York Courts.  The Order provides that:
    …effective immediately and until further order, no papers shall be accepted for filing by a county clerk or a court in any matter of a type not included on the list of essential matters attached as Exh. A. This directive applies to both paper and electronic filings.
    Continue Reading The New York State Courts Have Suspended Most Court Filings as of March 22, 2020

    In In re Everquote, Inc. Securities Litigation, 2019 N.Y. Slip Op. 29242, No. 651177/2019, 2019 WL 3686065 (Sup. Ct. N.Y. Cnty. Aug. 7, 2019), Justice Andrew Borrok of the New York County Commercial Division stayed discovery pending a motion to dismiss a federal securities class action pursuant to the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (the “PSLRA”), diverging from the handful of state courts that have grappled with that statute’s application since the Supreme Court’s ruling last year in Cyan, Inc. v. Beaver County Employees Retirement Fund, 138 S.Ct. 1061 (2018) (“Cyan”). The PSLRA provides for an automatic discovery
    Continue Reading Commercial Division Justices Provide Dueling Approaches to Discovery Stays in State Court Securities Litigation

    Pursuant to New York Civil Practice Law and Rules § 306-b, a plaintiff is required to serve a summons and complaint within 120 days of commencing an action. Although a court may grant an extension of this deadline for good cause shown or in the interests of justice, Judge Richard M. Platkin recently found that neither justified an extension of the plaintiff’s time to serve its summons and complaint in Plank, LLC v. Dutch Village, LLC, et al., 62 Misc. 3d 1220(A) (N.Y. Sup. Ct. Feb. 7, 2019). In that case, the Court rejected any argument that the plaintiff’s failure
    Continue Reading Commercial Division Denies Plaintiff’s Request for Additional Time to Serve Complaint After Plaintiff LLC Failed to Appear Through Counsel

    During her annual State of Our Judiciary speech on February 26, 2019, Chief Judge Janet DiFiore announced that the Commercial Division would be expanding to Bronx County. As stated by Chief Judge DiFiore, the expansion is “in recognition of the economic resurgence taking place in the Bronx” and “the number of commercial cases filed in Bronx Supreme Civil.” Although the change was effective on April 1, 2019, the Commercial Division has yet to announce which justices will be assigned to these new Commercial Division openings or amend the Commercial Division Rules to provide for, among other things, a jurisdictional threshold
    Continue Reading Chief Judge DiFiore Announces Expansion of Commercial Division to Bronx County

    In Kyowa Seni, Co., Ltd. v. ANA Aircraft Technics, Co., Ltd., Docket No. 650589/2017, 2018 WL 3321410 (N.Y. Sup. Ct. July 5, 2018), Justice Saliann Scarpulla of the New York County Commercial Division joined in a long line of New York federal cases that have vitiated the registration theory of jurisdiction.
    Continue Reading Seeking to Allege General Jurisdiction in New York? Corporate Registration is Not Enough

    In an effort to streamline litigation in the Commercial Division, the Commercial Division Advisory Council has continued with its revisions to the Commercial Division Rules by recently implementing one new rule encouraging early adjudication on threshold issues, and revising another rule to approve the use of technology-assisted review in discovery.
    Continue Reading Commercial Division Rule Revisions Continue to Promote Efficiency in Complex Cases

    Four of the proposed amendments to the Commercial Division Rules, which were discussed in an earlier blog post while the rules were under consideration by the Office of Administration, were adopted over the summer and have now gone into effect in the Commercial Division.
    Continue Reading Commercial Division Rolls Out Four New Rules Covering Expert Disclosures, Temporary Restraining Order Requirements, Forum Selection Clauses and Trial Length