Archive: November 20, 2007

Default Judgment Overturned Due to Law Firm Error

Default Judgment Overturned Due to Law Firm Error

Franco Belli Plumbing & Heating & Sons, Inc. v. Imperial Dev. & Constr. Corp., 845 N.Y.S.2d 446 (N.Y. App. Div. 2007)

In this case, the appellate court reversed a default judgment entered against defendant New York City School Construction Authority (“SCA”).  Plaintiff had claimed that Imperial Development & Construction Corp., the general contractor, owed over $253,000 to it as the sub-contractor for plumbing work on the project.  Imperial disputed the claim.  Pursuant to Public Authorities Law § 1735(6), plaintiff notified SCA, as the owner of the property where the disputed work took place, of its dispute with Imperial.  Also pursuant to that law, SCA was required to withhold the disputed amount of money from any payments it made to Imperial pursuant to the construction contract.  After plaintiff filed a note of issue, SCA disclosed that it had failed to withhold any money on plaintiff’s behalf.  Consequently, plaintiff moved to preclude SCA from introducing evidence regarding setoffs and back-charges with respect to its contract with Imperial on the basis that SCA had failed to respond to interrogatories seeking such information.  The Supreme Court granted this motion upon SCA’s default. Read More

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