Press Releases


28-Month Gap In Treatment Does Not Bar LASIK Victim’s Malpractice Claim

May 16th, 2017

May 16, 2017

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 William Freely v. Eric D. Donnernfeld, M.D. and Ophthalmic Consultants of Long Island

In the Supreme Court, Nassau County, New York, Case No. 601780/2013

 28-Month Gap In Treatment Does Not Bar LASIK Victim’s Malpractice Claim

On May 3, 2017, the New York appellate court reinstated a patient’s LASIK malpractice claim, despite a 28-month gap in treatment, based on the continuous treatment doctrine.  The lower court had granted partial summary judgment to the LASIK surgeon, Eric D. Donnenfeld, M.D., and his practice, Ophthalmic Consultants of Long Island.  The Appellate Division, Second Department reversed.  It held:

After being told, in November 2008, that his only options were to wait for the new treatment or seek treatment outside the country, the plaintiff returned to the defendants for treatment of the same condition on March 9, 2011, and, in fact, received treatment for the same condition from the defendants continuing until December 2012. Under these circumstances, there are questions of fact as to whether further treatment was explicitly anticipated by both the defendants and the plaintiff after 2008, and whether, under the particular circumstances of this case, the March 9, 2011, visit constituted a timely return visit (see Gomez v Katz, 61 AD3d 108; see also Devadas v Niksarli, 120 AD3d 1000).

The appellate court’s decision is very important for patients who develop LASIK complications, including post-LASIK ectasia, which may not manifest any symptoms until years after their surgery.

On March 3, 2001, Dr. Donnenfeld performed LASIK eye surgery on William Freely.  18 months later, Mr. Freely developed keratoconus, an ectatic disease that causes progressive thinning and weakening of the cornea.  The complaint alleges that Dr. Donnenfeld failed to recognize pre-operative signs of keratoconus, for which LASIK surgery was contraindicated.  The complaint further alleges that Dr. Donnenfeld failed to diagnose keratoconus and post-LASIK ectasia, as well as timely inform and treat Mr. Freely.  The complaint contends that Dr. Donnenfeld’s negligence in performing contraindicated surgery on Mr. Freely rendered him with a permanent visual disability.

On November 12, 2015, the Nassau County Supreme Court granted defendants’ motion for partial summary judgement.  In the motion, defendants moved to dismiss all claims arising prior March 9, 2011 as time-barred under the statute of limitations.

In a related decision, the appellate court affirmed the lower court’s decision which denied plaintiff’s motion to plead fraud against Dr. Donnenfeld.  Plaintiff alleged that Dr. Donnenfeld knowingly concealed the fact that the patient had developed post-LASIK ectasia, and withheld therapy for five years.  The appellate court held:

The allegations of fraud set forth in the proposed amended complaint amounted only to allegations that the defendants concealed their alleged malpractice.  This is insufficient to give rise to a cause of action sounding in fraud separate and different from the malpractice cause of action (see Simkuski v. Saeli, 44 NY 2d 442, 452).

Plaintiff is represented by Todd J. Krouner of the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner, in Chappaqua, New York.  Mr. Krouner represents victims of LASIK surgery throughout the United States, and has extensive experience in litigating medical malpractice actions.  Following Mr. Krouner’s $7.25 million verdict in Schiffer v. Speaker, he has the two largest verdicts for LASIK malpractice.

A copy of the decisions is available here. For further information, please contact Todd J. Krouner, Esq., at (914) 238-5800.

 

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Douglas Steinbrech, M.D, And Gotham Plastic Surgery, PLLC, Are Sued For Plastic Surgery Malpractice

March 6th, 2017

March 6, 2017

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DOUGLAS STEINBRECH, M.D, AND GOTHAM PLASTIC SURGERY, PLLC, ARE SUED FOR PLASTIC SURGERY MALPRACTICE

Michael Youwanes v. Douglas Steinbrech, M.D, and Gotham Plastic Surgery, PLLC

Supreme Court of New York County, State of New York, Case No.: 805038/2017

 On February 3, 2017, Michael Youwanes filed a complaint against Douglas Steinbrech, M.D, and Gotham Plastic Surgery, PLLC, in the Supreme Court of New York County, State of New York, for medical malpractice arising from a body lift abdominoplasty procedure.

The complaint alleges that on or about December 3, 2015, plaintiff came under the care and treatment of defendants for the purpose of undergoing a body lift abdominoplasty procedure, otherwise known as a “tummy tuck.”  Dr. Steinbrech allegedly departed from the standard of care by placing the incision line too close to Mr. Youwanes’s  pubis.

As a result of Defendants’ medical malpractice, the complaint alleges that the patient incurred substantial damages, and was physically deformed and impaired, with residual flank, abdominal fullness and unevenness, unpleasant scarring, functional difficulties and tension in his genital area.

Mr. Youwanes lives in the State of Arizona. He is represented by the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner in Chappaqua, New York.  Mr. Krouner has extensive experience in litigating legal and medical malpractice actions. If you have been injured as a result of a medical malpractice, please contact the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner for a free consultation

A copy of the complaint is available here.  For further information, please contact Todd J. Krouner, Esq., at (914) 238-5800.

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Joseph Romanello, Joseph Dimyan, And The Romanello Law Firm Are Sued For Legal Malpractice And For Violation Of New York Judiciary Law § 487

December 9th, 2016

December 9, 2016

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

JOSEPH ROMANELLO, JOSEPH DIMYAN AND

THE ROMANELLO LAW FIRM ARE SUED FOR LEGAL MALPRACTICE AND FOR VIOLATION OF NEW YORK JUDICIARY LAW § 487

Edward Leili v. Joseph Romanello, Joseph Dimyan And The Romanello  Law Firm

Supreme Court of New York County, State of New York, Case No.: 159603/2016

On November 15, 2016, Edward Leili filed a complaint against Joseph Romanello, Joseph Dimyan, and The Romanello Law Firm, in the Supreme Court of New York County, State of New York.

The complaint alleges that this case involves defendants’ bungled effort to represent plaintiff in a medical malpractice action in which defendants failed to protect the statute of limitations, and fraudulently concealed the nature of their inept representation of plaintiff to the Court and to the plaintiff, in violation of New York Judiciary Law § 487. Plaintiff developed sepsis in connection with an orthopedic surgery that he required in connection with an injury that he had sustained. Due to his health care providers’ failure to timely diagnose and treat the sepsis, plaintiff required emergency surgery to remove a substantial portion of his intestines.

As a result of Defendants’ legal malpractice, Edward Leili incurred substantial damages. Defendants told plaintiff that the value of the underlying medical malpractice action which they failed to timely prosecute was $25,000,000.

Mr. Leili lives in Danbury, Connecticut. He is represented by the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner in Chappaqua, New York.  Mr. Krouner has extensive experience in litigating legal and medical malpractice actions. If you have been injured as a result of a legal or medical malpractice, please contact the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner for a free consultation.

A copy of the complaint is available here.  For further information, please contact Todd J. Krouner, Esq., at (914) 238-5800.

 

 

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Dr. Farzad Yaghouti and Global Laser Vision Sued For LASIK Malpractice

November 16th, 2016

November 16, 2016

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 Ashli Bryant v. Farzad Yaghouti, M.D. and Global Laser Vision

Superior Court of California, County of San Diego, Civil Action No. 37-2016-00038327-CU-MM-CTL

DR. FARZAD YAGHOUTI and GLOBAL LASER VISION SUED FOR LASIK MALPRACTICE

On November 1, 2016, plaintiff Ashli Bryant filed suit against Farzad Yaghouti, M.D., and Global Laser Vision, in the Superior Court of California, County of San Diego, for the negligent performance of LASIK surgery.

The complaint alleges that on November 13, 2015, Dr. Yaghouti performed elective LASIK eye surgery on both of Ms. Bryant’s eyes.

The complaint further alleges that during the course of surgery on Ms. Bryant’s right eye, the treatment was interrupted. Instead of resuming the surgical treatment where it had been interrupted, Dr. Yaghouti caused or allowed the excimer laser to reinitiate the treatment from the beginning of the treatment plan, causing overtreatment of Ms. Bryant’s right cornea.

As a result of the elective LASIK surgery performed by Dr. Yaghouti, Ms. Bryant suffered severe, serious, and permanent injuries to her right cornea.

Ms. Bryant is represented by Todd J. Krouner of the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner in Chappaqua, New York, and Steven C. Vosseller of Law Office of Steven C. Vosseller, in San Diego, California. Mr. Krouner represents victims of LASIK surgery throughout theUnited States. Mr. Vosseller has extensive experience in litigating medical malpractice actions.

A copy of plaintiff’s complaint is available here. For further information, please contact Todd J. Krouner, Esq., at (914) 238-5800, or Steven C. Vosseller, Esq., at (858) 429-4062.

 

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Former Nyack College Softball Coach, Kurt Ludwigsen, Admits That He Subjected His Victims To Sexual Assault By Threatening Their Valuable Athletic Scholarships

September 16th, 2016

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 Does v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY)

Former Nyack College Softball Coach, Kurt Ludwigsen, Admits That He Subjected His Victims To Sexual Assault By Threatening Their Valuable Athletic Scholarships

 Kurt Ludwigsen, the former Nyack College softball coach, pleaded guilty today to seven counts of felony coercion, in connection with his sexual assault of his former team members. Previously, in connection with his prior conviction for sexual assault, Ludwigsen had admitted in open Court that he had unwanted sexual contact with his players to degrade them and for his sexual pleasure. In a strange turn, the prior sexual assault conviction was vacated on June 29, 2016.

In pleading guilty to felony coercion today, Ludwigsen was required to repeat his confession to the sexual assaults because of his subsequent attempts to deny responsibility.  Ludwigsen admitted further that he had coerced his victims by having threatened to revoke their valuable softball scholarships with Nyack College, which he controlled.

Ludwigsen was re-sentenced to five years of probation by Judge William A. Kelly in the Rockland County Justice Court, in New City, New York.

The reason for this highly unusual re-sentencing is difficult to comprehend. However, it appears to reflect an inexplicable accommodation by the Court to help Ludwigsen avoid sex offender’s conditions of probation in California, where Ludwigsen wants to return. Indeed, Ludwigsen’s ongoing effort to erase the sexual nature of his crimes was confirmed by his criminal defense attorney’s astonishing assertion in Court today that “this is not a sex offence case.”

This is a sad day for victims of sexual assault. The Court’s lax probationary criminal sentence, and other generous accommodations granted to this admitted sex offender, send an alarming message that sex crimes are not perceived as real crimes. In addition, it was previously reported that Ludwigsen was allegedly investigated for sexual assault on his teenage softball players in Petaluma, California, before he was hired as the softball coach at Nyack College.  Today’s unusual re-sentencing allows Ludwigsen to return to Chico, California, virtually unscathed, and likely undeterred, in his predatory sexual behavior.

Todd J. Krouner represents six victims of Ludwigsen’s sexual assault in a civil lawsuit pending in the federal court New York against Ludwigsen, Nyack College and several of its administrators and employees. For further information, please contact the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner at (914) 238-5800.

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Former Nyack College Softball Coach, Kurt Ludwigsen, Withdraws His Counterclaims Against His Former Players For Allegedly “Making False Allegation[s] Of Sexual Harassment

June 16th, 2016

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

A. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; Taylor Brown, individually and as Assistant Softball Coach for Nyack College; Karen Davie, individually and as Director of Human Resources and Title IX Coordinator for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

E. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; Taylor Brown, individually and as Assistant Softball Coach for Nyack College; Karen Davie, individually and as Director of Human Resources and Title IX Coordinator for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

K. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; Taylor Brown, individually and as Assistant Softball Coach for Nyack College; Karen Davie, individually and as Director of Human Resources and Title IX Coordinator for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

M. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; Taylor Brown, individually and as Assistant Softball Coach for Nyack College; Karen Davie, individually and as Director of Human Resources and Title IX Coordinator for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

S. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; Taylor Brown, individually and as Assistant Softball Coach for Nyack College; Karen Davie, individually and as Director of Human Resources and Title IX Coordinator for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

Y. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; Taylor Brown, individually and as Assistant Softball Coach for Nyack College; Karen Davie, individually and as Director of Human Resources and Title IX Coordinator for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

FORMER NYACK COLLEGE SOFTBALL COACH, KURT LUDWIGSEN,  WITHDRAWS HIS COUNTERCLAIMS AGAINST HIS FORMER PLAYERS FOR ALLEGEDLY “MAKING FALSE ALLEGATION[S] OF SEXUAL HARASSMENT.”

On June 16, 2016, former Nyack College softball coach, Kurt Ludwigsen, voluntarily withdrew his counterclaims against six of his former softball players. Ludwigsen’s retreat comes in response to the blistering reaction of the federal judge, who took a dim view of his allegations in view of his plea to seven counts of sexual assault involving seven different student-athletes. Specifically, Ludwigsen admitted that he “forcibly touch[ed] the sexual or other intimate parts” of seven of his student-athletes “for the purpose of degrading or abusing such person, or for the purpose of gratifying [his] sexual desire.” N.Y. Penal Law § 130.52. Consequently, the federal judge found it implausible that Ludwigsen could have kept his coaching job.

Ludwigsen’s counterclaims alleged that his former players made “false allegation[s] of sexual harassment” to employees of Nyack College, the police, press and others, resulting in his termination from Nyack College. However, on January 21, 2016, Ludwigsen pleaded guilty to seven counts of sexual assault against seven of his former players. On March 31, 2016, he was sentenced to three years of probation.

On May 18, 2016, the parties appeared before the Honorable Cathy Seibel in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, in White Plains, New York, regarding Plaintiffs’ application to dismiss the scurrilous counterclaims. Judge Seibel appeared incredulous at Ludwigsen’s accusations, and remarked to his attorney, Michael Burke, “Mr. Burke, really? Really?” Judge Seibel further commented that she was “not clear how it could be plausible” that the Plaintiffs “wrongfully interfered with [Ludwigsen’s] contract for the sole purpose of harming him,” where “[t]hey reported that he acted inappropriately and there’s no question he did.” She remarked that “he was going to get fired for [his admitted criminal conduct]. It’s not plausible that they [Nyack College] would have kept him on.”

Plaintiffs’ counsel, Todd J. Krouner, states: “Ludwigsen’s transparent attempt to further harass the victims of his sexual assault has fallen on its face. It was never possible to reconcile Kurt Ludwigsen’s counterclaims against his former players with his guilty plea to multiple counts of sexual assault. Nevertheless, with the strong encouragement of Judge Seibel, Ludwigsen has acknowledged belatedly that his baseless counterclaims never had any merit.”

As previously reported, six former softball players filed civil lawsuits against Nyack College, its administrators and Ludwigsen. Those lawsuits allege that Ludwigsen’s outrageous conduct included, among other things, routinely licking his players’ ears, kissing their lips and faces, slapping their buttocks, grabbing their breasts, directing them to sit on his lap, lying on top of them, commenting about their physical attributes, having sexually explicit conversations with them, inviting a pornographic actress known as Allie Haze to practice and directing students to life counseling sessions with her, directing an underage drinking outing where his players were instructed to dress in cocktail dresses and dance with male strangers and offering to assist players to attain employment in the adult entertainment industry. Ludwigsen’s counter-claims failed to specify which of these, or any other, allegations of sexual harassment are allegedly false.

The plaintiffs are represented by the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner (Chappaqua, N.Y.). Mr. Krouner has experience representing victims of sexual harassment, sexual assault and discrimination in schools and workplaces throughout the New York City metropolitan area.

A copy of the transcript of the May 18, 2016 court conference before the Honorable Judge Cathy Seibel is available here. For further information, please contact the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner at (914) 238-5800.

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Former Jordan’s Pizzeria Owner Sued For Creating A “Trap For The Unwary”

June 10th, 2016

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Hannah Buckstine v. Jordan Schor et al.

In the Supreme Court of the State of New York, Westchester County (White Plains, NY), Case No. 57710/2016

 Former Jordan’s Pizzeria Owner Sued For Creating A “Trap For The Unwary”

On May 31, 2016, Hannah Buckstine, a SUNY New Paltz college student from Pleasantville, New York, filed a claim against Jordan Schor, the present owner of End Cut on Church Street in New Paltz; Jordan’s of New Paltz, LLC, the business name for Jordan’s Pizzeria of New Paltz (now closed); and LCore Enterprise Corporation, the owner of the building out of which Jordan’s Pizzeria operated.  Ms. Buckstine is suing for claims stemming from an accident on October 25, 2014, when Ms. Buckstine fell down the steps at Jordan’s Pizzeria in New Paltz and suffered traumatic brain injury.

The complaint alleges that that Mr. Schor boasted in the press as to how he exploited his collegiate patrons, placing his profits above their safety.  In a January 7, 2016 article entitled “From Drunk, Late Night Pizza to Upscale French-Italian Fusion,” published on October 15, 2015, in The Little Rebellion, Mr. Schor boasted:  “Anyone can make pizza.  It didn’t really matter how it tasted, people were throwing it up an hour later.  It was just about volume.  Volume equals money.  Money equals success.”  The complaint also alleges that the absentee landlord, LCore Enterprise Corporation, the pizzeria tenant, and Mr. Schor, were negligent in their creation and maintenance of the unsafe, unlit, unmarked hallway and stairs, which served as a trap for the unwary.  

The complaint further alleges that as a result of defendants’ negligence, Ms. Buckstine fell down a flight of concrete steps, fractured her skull, was rendered comatose, required a craniectomy and a frontal lobectomy, and suffers from traumatic brain damage.

The plaintiff is represented by the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner (Chappaqua, N.Y.). Mr. Krouner has experience representing victims of premises liability and traumatic brain injury cases throughout the New York City metropolitan area.

A copy of the complaint is available here. For further information, please contact the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner at (914) 238-5800.

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Club Marquee Is Sued For Negligence

April 8th, 2016

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Gabriel Martinez v. 10th Avenue Hospitality Group, LLC, d/b/a Club Marquee

In the Supreme Court of Bronx County, State of New York, Case No. 22394/2016E

CLUB MARQUEE IS SUED FOR NEGLIGENCE

 On April 7, 2016, Gabriel Martinez filed a complaint against 10th Avenue Hospitality Group, LLC, d/b/a Club Marquee, in the Supreme Court of Bronx County, State of New York.

The complaint alleges that nightclubs are supposed to be fun. Nightclubs are known to be loud. But the pounding noise of the stereo speakers is not to be so loud that its vibration causes a five liter champagne bottle to fall off the stereo speaker, onto the head of security personnel whose job responsibility requires him to stand in front of the speaker by the stage. That is what happened to plaintiff at one of New York’s premiere night clubs, Club Marquee, on October 30, 2015. As a result of defendant’s negligence, Gabriel Martinez sustained serious personal injuries, including traumatic brain damage and partial deafness. Mr. Martinez lives in the Bronx, New York. He is represented by the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner in Chappaqua, New York.  Mr. Krouner has extensive experience in litigating personal injury actions. If you have been injured as a result of negligence, please contact the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner for a free consultation.

A copy of the complaint is available here.  For further information, please contact Todd J. Krouner, Esq., at (914) 238-5800.

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Softball Coach Who Pleaded Guilty To Criminal Sexual Assault Countersues His Former Players For Allegedly “Making False Allegation[s] Of Sexual Harassment.”

March 8th, 2016

A. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

E. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

K. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

M. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

S. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

Y. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

SOFTBALL COACH  WHO PLEADED GUILTY TO CRIMINAL SEXUAL ASSAULT COUNTERSUES HIS FORMER PLAYERS FOR ALLEGEDLY “MAKING FALSE ALLEGATION[S] OF SEXUAL HARASSMENT.”

Stealing a page from Bill Cosby’s playbook of accusing sexual assault victims of inventing their allegations, former Nyack College softball coach, Kurt Ludwigsen, has answered the Title IX sexual harassment lawsuits filed by six of his former student-athletes in federal court, with counter-claims.

Ludwigsen’s counter-claims allege that his former players made “false allegation[s] of sexual harassment” to employees of Nyack College, the police, press and others.

However, unlike Bill Cosby, on January 21, 2016, Ludwigsen has already pleaded guilty to seven counts of sexual assault against seven of his former players.  In addition, the criminal court docket reveals a written voluntary statement, dated April 9, 2015, signed by Ludwigsen, in which he confessed to South Nyack Police his pervasive criminal sexual harassment of the softball players.

As previously reported, six former softball players filed civil lawsuits against Nyack College, its administrators and Ludwigsen. Those lawsuits allege that Ludwigsen’s outrageous conduct included, among other things, routinely licking his players’ ears, kissing their lips and faces, slapping their buttocks, grabbing their breasts, directing them to sit on his lap, lying on top of them, commenting about their physical attributes, having sexually explicit conversations with them, inviting a pornographic actress known as Allie Haze to practice and directing students to life counseling sessions with her, directing an underage drinking outing where his players were instructed to dress in cocktail dresses and dance with male strangers and offering to assist players to attain employment in the adult entertainment industry.

Ludwigsen’s counter-claims fail to specify which of these, or any other, allegations of sexual harassment are allegedly false.

Currently, Ludwigsen is scheduled to be sentenced in his criminal case in the Rockland County Supreme Court, on March 29, 2016.

The plaintiffs are represented by the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner (Chappaqua, N.Y.). Mr. Krouner has experience representing victims of sexual harassment, sexual assault and discrimination in schools and workplaces throughout the New York City metropolitan area.

Copies of the complaints and Ludwigsen’s answer and counter-claims are available at www.krounerlaw.com. For further information, please contact the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner at (914) 238-5800.

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Drs. Atwal And Zimmerman Sued For LASIK Surgery Malpractice

November 23rd, 2015

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

Jacob Smith v. Amar Atwal, M.D., Jay S. Zimmerman, O.D., Amar Atwal, M.D., P.C., Atwal Eye Care and Buffalo Eye Care

In the Supreme Court of Erie County, State of New York, Case No. 813469/2015 

DRS. ATWAL AND ZIMMERMAN SUED FOR LASIK SURGERY MALPRACTICE

On November 20, 2015, Jacob Smith filed a complaint against Amar Atwal, M.D., Jay S. Zimmerman, O.D., Amar Atwal, M.D., P.C., Atwal Eye Care and Buffalo Eye Care, in the Supreme Court of Erie County, State of New York, for medical malpractice arising from the performance of elective LASIK eye surgery, which the patient never should have had because of pre-existing corneal disease. 

The complaint states that on May 30, 2013, Dr. Atwal performed elective LASIK eye surgery on both of Mr. Smith’s eyes. The complaint alleges that Dr. Atwal and Dr. Zimmerman, the optometrist, both screened Mr. Smith for, and recommended the elective LASIK eye surgery.  The complaint further alleges that Drs. Atwal and Zimmerman failed to recognize signs of corneal disease known as form fruste keratoconus, for which elective LASIK eye surgery is contraindicated.  As a result, Mr. Smith developed post-LASIK ectasia.  

The complaint also alleges that to treat the post-LASIK ectasia, Mr. Smith is scheduled to undergo collagen cross linking surgery (“CXL”), in the hope of preserving whatever vision remains in his eyes. CXL is an experimental surgical procedure, which is not currently approved for use in the United States by the United States Food and Drug Administration.  If the CXL experimental procedure is not effective in saving Mr. Smith’s vision, he may have to undergo further vision-threatening cornea transplant surgery.  

The complaint states that generally, individuals who are diagnosed with post-LASIK ectasia suffer from a host of problems related to diminished visual acuity and diminished quality of vision, including, without limitation, halos, blurry vision, glare, ghosting, starbursts, double vision, light sensitivity, contrast sensitivity, loss of depth perception, difficulty driving, especially at night, headaches, dry eyes and foreign body sensation. 

Mr. Smith is represented by the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner in Chappaqua, New York.  Mr. Krouner represents victims of LASIK surgery throughout the United States.  

A copy of the complaint is available here. For further information, please contact Todd J. Krouner, Esq., at (914) 238-5800.

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“New York’s Christian College,” Nyack College, Sued For Former Softball Coach’s Sexual Assault And Sexual Harassment

October 2nd, 2015

October 2, 2015 

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

A. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

E. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

K. Doe v. Kurt Ludwigsen, in his individual capacity; Kirsten Lambertson, in her individual capacity; Michael G. Scales, individually and as President of Nyack College; David C. Jennings, individually and as Executive Vice President of Nyack College; Keith Davie, individually and as Athletic Director for Nyack College; Amanda Aikens, individually and as Assistant Athletic Director for Nyack College; and Nyack College

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (White Plains, NY) 

“NEW YORK’S CHRISTIAN COLLEGE,” NYACK COLLEGE, SUED FOR FORMER SOFTBALL COACH’S SEXUAL ASSAULT AND SEXUAL HARASSMENT

On October 2, 2015, three female student athletes on the Nyack College women’s softball team filed complaints against Nyack College (Nyack, N.Y.) for claims stemming from multiple instances of sexual assault and sexual harassment committed by the college’s former Head Softball Coach, Kurt Ludwigsen. Earlier this year, the Rockland County District Attorney charged Ludwigsen with seven counts of felony coercion in the first degree, 94 counts of forcible touching, 94 counts of sexual assault in the third degree and two counts of harassment in the second degree.

The complaints allege that Ludwigsen’s outrageous conduct included routinely licking his players’ ears, kissing their lips and faces, slapping their buttocks, grabbing their breasts, directing them to sit on his lap, lying on top of them, commenting about their physical attributes, having sexually explicit conversations with them, inviting a pornographic actress known as Allie Haze to practice and directing students to life counseling sessions with her, directing an underage drinking outing where his players were instructed to dress in cocktail dresses and dance with male strangers and offering to assist players to attain employment in the adult entertainment industry.

The complaints further allege that Nyack College hired and retained Ludwigsen in 2014 notwithstanding publicly available information which indicated that (a) he had left a coaching position with the premier women’s softball program at the University of Arizona; (b) subsequently, he took a non-paying coaching position with an elite girls’ softball team, ages 15 to 18, in California, known as the NorCal Assault; (c) while coaching the NorCal Assault, he was the subject of a criminal investigation for sexual assault and sexual harassment against several of his young female players; and (d) while coaching the NorCal Assault, under the alias “Kurt Vogner,” he also founded and promoted a paid telephone service that linked pornography actresses (including Bree Olson, with whom he was photographed) to their “fans”. Nyack College markets itself as, “New York’s Christian College,” even though the complaints allege that Ludwigsen admitted that he was certainly not a “typical Christian coach.”

The plaintiffs allege that Ludwigsen engaged in a pattern and practice of outlandish sexual harassment and sexual assault while serving as Head Coach of the Nyack College women’s softball team during the 2014-2015 academic year. The plaintiffs further allege that Nyack College, through its administration and athletic department, discriminated against the plaintiffs and members of the softball team on the basis of their gender, in violation of Title IX, 20 U.S.C. §§ 1681 et seq. (“Title IX”), and retaliated against the plaintiffs and members of the softball team, in violation of Title IX, when they complained about Ludwigsen’s outrageous conduct in connection with his female student athletes. 

In addition to claims for sexual discrimination arising Title IX, the complaints also include claims of battery, intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress, negligent hiring, negligent supervision and negligent retention.

The complaints also name Ludwigsen as a defendant, as well as Nyack College President Michael G. Scales, Nyack College Vice President David C. Jennings, Nyack College Athletic Director Keith Davie, Nyack College Assistant Athletic Director Amanda Aikens and former Nyack College Head Softball Coach Kirsten Lambertson, who served as Assistant Softball Coach during Ludwigsen’s tenure as Head Softball Coach.

The plaintiffs are represented by the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner (Chappaqua, N.Y.). Mr. Krouner has experience representing victims of sexual harassment, sexual assault and discrimination in schools and workplaces throughout the New York City metropolitan area.

Copies of the complaints are available here. For further information, please contact the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner at (914) 238-5800.

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Visiting Nurse Service Is Sued For Negligence And Fraud

November 4th, 2014

November 4, 2014 

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

Dorothy Buxton v. Visiting Nurse Service of New York Inc., Visiting Nurse Service of New York Home Care Inc. and Jane Doe 1-10

In the Supreme Court, Bronx County, New York 

VISITING NURSE SERVICE IS SUED FOR NEGLIGENCE AND FRAUD

On September 4, 2014, Dorothy Buxton filed a complaint against Visiting Nurse Service of New York Inc. (“Visiting Nurse Service”), Visiting Nurse Service of New York Home Care Inc. and Jane Doe 1-10 (collectively, the “Defendants”) for negligence and fraud in her care. 

Dorothy Buxton is currently a 96-year-old woman. She is substantially impaired in her ability to speak due to her significant disabilities. In October of 2013, Dorothy Buxton suffered a fractured femur while under the care of Visiting Nurse Service. In addition to requiring surgery, Dorothy Buxton also had an extended stay in hospice care due to the severity of her injuries.

 At the time of her injuries, Dorothy Buxton was under the constant care and supervision of the Visiting Nurse Service 24 hours per day, seven days per week. Furthermore, during her care under the Visiting Nurse Service, Dorothy Buxton became increasingly reliant on the home health aides’ use of a Hoyer Lift. A Hoyer Lift is a device for hoisting an immobile person, such as Dorothy Buxton, in and out of her bed or chair. The complaint contends that a home health aide caused serious personal injuries to Dorothy Buxton, on or about October 4, 2014, by dropping her while attempting to use the Hoyer Lift, or by other means.

 In conjunction with Defendants’ negligence, the complaint alleges that the Defendants also failed to report that they had caused Ms. Buxton serious personal injuries. Consequently, the complaint alleges that Defendants not only caused Dorothy Buxton’s serious injuries but also concealed them from her family.

 Ms. Buxton lives in the Bronx, New York. She is represented by the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner in Chappaqua, New York.  Mr. Krouner has extensive experience in litigating personal injury actions. If you have been injured as a result of negligence, please contact the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner for a free consultation.

 A copy of the complaint is available here.  For further information, please contact Todd J. Krouner, Esq., at (914) 238-5800.

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LASIK Malpractice Re-trial Ordered Against Frank R. Owczarek, M.D.

May 30th, 2014

May 30, 2014 

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

Thomas Baird v. Frank R. Owczarek, M.D. and Eye Care of Delaware, LLC In the Superior Court of the State of Delaware, Case No. N11C-09-241 RRC 

LASIK MALPRACTICE RE-TRIAL ORDERED AGAINST FRANK R. OWCZAREK, M.D.

On May 28, 2014, the Delaware Supreme Court reversed a jury verdict in favor of Frank R. Owczarek, M.D., Eye Care of Delaware, LLC, and Cataract and Laser Center, LLC (the “Defendants”) and ordered a new trial. Plaintiff Thomas Baird had sued the Defendants for medical malpractice involving LASIK eye surgery. Following an eight-day jury trial in April 2013, the jury returned a verdict in favor of the Defendants. The Delaware Supreme Court reversed and ordered a new trial on two ground

First, it found that the trial court abused its discretion after it learned that a juror had conducted internet research during the trial, contrary to its explicit instruction not to do so, but then declined to conduct any investigation concerning the substance of the juror’s internet research. 

Second, the Delaware Supreme Court ruled that the trial court abused its discretion when it admitted evidence of informed consent, over plaintiff’s objection, when plaintiff made no claim for breach of informed consent.  In a case of first impression in Delaware, the Delaware Supreme Court held that: “Evidence of informed consent in a medical malpractice action could confuse the jury by creating the impression that consent to the surgery was consent to the injury.” The Delaware Supreme Court cited the appellate courts of six other states that have ruled similarly.  

A copy of the Delaware Supreme Court’s decision is available here 

The parties’ briefs and oral argument before the Delaware Supreme Court are available here. 

Plaintiff was represented by Todd J. Krouner, of The Law Office of Todd J. Krouner, and Bruce Hudson, of Hudson & Castle Law, LLC.  Defendants were represented by Joshua H. Meyeroff and Gregory McKee, of Wharton Levin Ehrmantraut & Klein.  For further information, please contact Mr. Krouner at 914-238-5800, or Mr. Hudson at 302-428-8800.  

            If you or a loved one has been injured by a doctor, you should promptly contact an attorney with experience in medical malpractice.  The Law Office of Todd J. Krouner has a proven track record of helping patients injured by eye doctors (and other forms of medical malpractice) all over the country.  To determine if you have a strong case, contact us for a free consultation at 914-38-5800.    

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FEDERAL JUDGE GRANTS MOTION FOR CLASS CERTIFICATION IN LAWSUIT AGAINST CABLEVISION ARISING FROM FOX TELEVISION BLACKOUT

April 9th, 2014

                                                                                                                                                                                                              April 9, 2014

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

  In re Cablevision Consumer Litigation

United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York

Civil Action No.: 10 CV 4992 (JS) (AKT)

FEDERAL JUDGE GRANTS MOTION FOR CLASS CERTIFICATION IN LAWSUIT AGAINST CABLEVISION ARISING FROM FOX TELEVISION BLACKOUT

 Last week, a federal court in New York ruled that Cablevision Systems Corporation (NYSE: CVC) and CSC Holdings, LLC’s (collectively, “Cablevision”) customers may proceed with a class action arising from Cablevision’s failure to provide subscribers with any credit in connection with the two-week blackout of Fox Television Network’s programming in October 2010.  The case, In re Cablevision Consumer Litigation, C.A. No. 10-CV-4992, is pending in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York.

On March 31, 2014, United States District Court Judge Joanna Seybert granted the plaintiffs’ motion for class certification in the lawsuit against Cablevision.  The class action was brought on behalf of Cablevision’s approximately three million subscribers in the New York, New Jersey and Connecticut broadcasting area, who contracted with Cablevision prior to October 16, 2010, when Cablevision failed to retransmit Fox Television programming for two weeks. Click here for a copy of the Court’s Memorandum and Order.

The Court concluded that plaintiffs met all of the requirements for class certification, rejecting each of Cablevision’s arguments.  Among other things, the Court ruled that Cablevision’s form contract presented common issues of law concerning the customers’ claim to a pro rata credit for the programming interruption. The Court also rejected Cablevision’s argument that provisions in the form contract relating to notice of the loss of programming precluded class certification, noting that Cablevision obviously was aware that it was not broadcasting any Fox Television programs.

In a prior decision, dated March 28, 2012, Judge Seybert rejected Cablevision’s argument that the Fox Television blackout was beyond its control, and denied the motion of Cablevision to dismiss the class action lawsuit.  Click here for a copy of that decision.

The Court ruled that co-lead and liaison counsel to the plaintiffs shall include The Law Office of Todd J. Krouner, in Chappaqua, New York, Stone Bonner & Rocco LLP, in New York, New York, and Chitwood Harley Harnes LLP, in New York, New York.  For further information, please visit www.krounerlaw.com, or contact Todd J. Krouner at (914) 238-5800, Ralph M. Stone at (212) 239-4340, or Gregory E. Keller at (917) 595-4600.

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Dr. Eric Donnenfeld Is Sued For LASIK Malpractice

July 25th, 2013

July 25, 2013 

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

William Freely v. Eric D. Donnernfeld, M.D. and Ophthalmic Consultants of Long Island

In the Supreme Court, Nassau County, New York, Case No. 601780/2013 

DR. ERIC DONNENFELD IS SUED FOR LASIK MALPRACTICE

On July 12, 2013, William Freely filed a complaint against Eric D. Donnernfeld, M.D. and Ophthalmic Consultants of Long Island, for the negligent performance of LASIK surgery. 

On March 3, 2001, Dr. Donnenfeld performed LASIK eye surgery on Mr. Freely.  18 months later, Mr. Freely developed keratoconus, an ectatic disease that causes progressive thinning and weakening of the cornea.  The complaint alleges that Dr. Donnenfeld failed to recognize pre-operative signs of keratoconus, for which LASIK surgery was contraindicated.  The complaint further alleges that Dr. Donnenfeld failed to diagnose keratoconus and post-LASIK ectasia, as well as timely inform and treat Mr. Freely.  The complaint contends that Dr. Donnenfeld’s negligence in performing contraindicated surgery on Mr. Freely rendered him with a permanent visual disability. 

Patients with ectasia often suffer a loss of visual acuity.  In addition, individuals may suffer from a host of problems related to the quality of their vision, which include, without limitation, halos, blurry vision, glare, ghosting, starbursts, double vision, light sensitivity, contrast sensitivity, loss of depth perception, difficulty driving a motor vehicle, especially at night, headaches, dry eyes, and foreign body sensation.

Mr. Freely lives in Deer Park, New York. He is represented by the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner in Chappaqua, New York.  Mr. Krouner represents victims of LASIK surgery throughout the United States, and has extensive experience in litigating medical malpractice actions.  

A copy of the complaint is available here. For further information, please contact Todd J. Krouner, Esq., at (914) 238-5800.

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Claims of Excessive Force, Assault and Battery Against The New York City Police Department and County of Westchester Police Department Survive Defendants’ Motion For Summary Judgment

October 19th, 2012

October 19, 2012 

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

Frank De Michele v. City of New York, County of Westchester, et al.

United States District Court for the Southern District of New York

Civil Action No.: 09-CV-9334 

On September 24, 2012, Hon. Paul G. Gardephe, in the United State District Court for the Southern District of New York, held that there are “material issues of fact” concerning Plaintiff Frank DeMichele’s claims of excessive use of force, assault and battery, by officers employed by the New York City Police Department (“NYPD”) and the Westchester County Department of Public Safety (“Westchester”).  The trial against NYPD Deputy Inspector Timothy Bugge, NYPD Captain Deodat Urprasad, and Westchester Police Officers Brian P. Tierney, George O. Ruiz and Christian M. Gutierrez, is set for December 10, 2012.

On November 9, 2010, Mr. DeMichele filed an amended complaint in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.  The complaint alleged that in a case of true mistaken identity, on January 18, 2009, police officers employed by the NYPD and Westchester, forcibly removed Mr. DeMichele from his home in the Bronx, and beat him.  The complaint alleged that the police officers were acting under the erroneous belief that Mr. DeMichele had led them on a high-speed chase from Westchester County into the Bronx, assaulted a police officer by ramming his vehicle into the police officer’s vehicle, and robbed a civilian.  In fact, the police officers were seeking Mr. DeMichele’s landlord’s son, who was hiding in Mr. DeMichele’s apartment.

The complaint alleged a cover-up by officers employed by defendants, including, the failure of a Westchester night vision video camera to record the arrest, the failure of a NYPD sergeant to record Mr. DeMichele’s injuries when he was brought to the 45th Precinct Station House, and the failure of that same sergeant to record the names and/or identities of emergency medical personnel who rendered medical treatment to Mr. DeMichele, while he was held there in police custody.

In deciding the motions for summary judgment, the Court held that “there are material issues of fact concerning both the extent to which Plaintiff resisted arrest and the degree of force that was used in effecting Plaintiff’s arrest.”  Furthermore, the Court denied Defendants’ motions to dismiss, even though Mr. DeMichele was not able to identify each of the officers who allegedly used force on him.  The Court held that Deputy Inspector Bugge, and Westchester Police Officers Tierney, Ruiz and Gutierrez, may be liable for the excessive use of force, because they “were concededly all present when the alleged, repeated acts of abuse took place, they had an opportunity to intervene.”  Finally, the Court denied the County of Westchester’s argument that its officers were entitled to qualified immunity, because “if, as [Mr. DeMichele] and other witnesses have testified, [Mr. DeMichele] was not resisting arrest but was nonetheless beaten, the officers could not have reasonably believed that their actions were lawful.”

The Court denied Plaintiff’s claims of false arrest and malicious prosecution, holding that Defendants had probable cause for the arrest and prosecution of Plaintiff.

            The Plaintiff is represented by Todd J. Krouner and Diana M. Carlino of the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner in Chappaqua, New York. Mr. Krouner and Ms. Carlino represent victims who are subjected to civil rights violations, including false arrest and police brutality in New York. 

A copy of the Court’s decision is available here.  For further information, please contact Todd J. Krouner or Diana M. Carlino at (914) 238-5800.

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Federal Judge Refuses To Dismiss Class Action Suit Against Cablevision For 2010 Blackout Of FOX Channels

March 31st, 2012

March 30, 2012 

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

In re Cablevision Consumer Litigation

United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York

Civil Action No.: 10 CV 49952 (JS) (AKT)) 

FEDERAL JUDGE REFUSES TO DISMISS CLASS ACTION SUIT AGAINST CABLEVISION FOR 2010 BLACKOUT OF FOX CHANNELS 

            This week a Federal Court rejected the argument of cable television giant Cablevision Systems Corp. that the Fox television blackout of October 2010 was beyond its control.  In a decision dated March 28 2012, United States District Court Judge Joanna Seybert denied the motion of Cablevision Systems Corporation and CSC Holdings, LLC (collectively, “Cablevision”) to dismiss a class action suit brought on behalf of Cablevision’s five million subscribers in the New York, Pennsylvania and Connecticut broadcasting areas for a 2-week blackout of programming in October 2010. 

            Cablevision argued that the blackout of certain programming and networks owned by News Corporation, including WNYW (“Fox 5”), WWOR (“My9”), was the result of a failed contract negotiation with News Corp.  Therefore, Cablevision claimed, the blackout was a “force majeure,” or beyond Cablevision’s control, and Cablevision should not be held accountable.  The Court expressly rejected that argument: “The Court is largely receptive to Plaintiffs’ argument that a force majeure clause would not relieve Cablevision from having to refund a portion of Plaintiffs’ pre-paid subscription fees pursuant to Paragraph 4.”  (Emphasis in original). 

            In refusing to dismiss the breach of contract claim, the Court looked to Paragraph 4 of Cablevision’s Terms of Service, which states: 

In any event, if there is a known program or service interruption in excess of 24 consecutive hours (or in excess of such lesser time period pursuant to state law), Cablevision, upon prompt notification of such failure or interruption, will either provide Subscriber with a pro-rata credit relating to such failure or interruption or, at its discretion, in lieu of the credit provide alternative programming during any program interruption. 

In their complaint, the plaintiffs seek a refund of their monthly cable bill for the 2-week blackout.  It is alleged that the blackout came at a particularly important time, as subscribers were unable to watch the New York Giants or the Philadelphia Phillies, who were in the MLB playoffs, and were deprived of Fox’s political coverage during an important midterm election. 

            Judge Seybert’s opinion is a victory for consumers, who are often left without any choice of cable provider and must bear the brunt of contract negotiations, along with increased monthly fees, without any real alternative for cable television. 

            The Court dismissed the plaintiffs’ consumer fraud and other related claims. 

            The Law Office of Todd J. Krouner, in Chappaqua, New York, serves as interim co-lead and liaison counsel to the plaintiffs.  A copy of Judge Seybert’s decision is available here.  For further information, please contact Todd J. Krouner at (914) 238-5800.

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Moody’s Must Defend Against Whistleblower’s Claim For Unlawful Termination

March 1st, 2012

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

Ilya Eric Kolchinsky v. Moody’s Corporation, Moody’s Investor Service, Inc.

and Raymond McDaniel

United States District Court for the Southern District of New York

Civil Action No.: 10 CV 6840 (PAC) 

  By Order dated February 27, 2012, United States District Court Judge Paul A. Crotty denied Moody’s Corporation’s, Moody’s Investor Service, Inc.’s (referred to collectively herein as “Moody’s”) and Raymond McDaniel’s motion to dismiss the claim of retaliatory discharge by whistleblower, Ilya Eric Kolchinsky.

 In his complaint, Mr. Kolchinsky, a former Managing Director of Moody’s, alleged three separate acts of whistleblowing involving Moody’s ratings of ABS-CDOs, the products that

were responsible for hundreds of billions of dollars of losses at financial institutions, and three corresponding acts of retaliation.  Mr. Kolchinsky was constructively terminated from his employment in 2009, after he reported that: 1) Moody’s was filing false reports, and 2) Moody’s actions in connection with its ratings were in violation of the rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission, and/or federal law relating to fraud against shareholders.

            Section 1514A of the Sarbanes-Oxley “Whistle Blower” statute makes it unlawful for certain employers to “discharge, demote, suspend, threaten, harass, or in any other manner discriminate against an employee in the terms or conditions of employment because of any lawful act done by the employee . . . to provide information . . . or otherwise assist in an investigation regarding any conduct the employee reasonably believes constitutes a violation” of certain, enumerated federal laws. 18 U.S.C. § 1514A. 

 Judge Crotty held that “a plaintiff need not allege termination to state a claim under Section 1514A.”  Instead, it is sufficient to show that a plaintiff suffered “a materially adverse change” in his employment status, such as “a decrease in wage or salary, a less distinguished title, a material loss of benefits, significantly diminished material responsibility, or other indices.”  (Internal citations omitted.)  Accordingly, the Court held that Mr. Kolchinsky “sufficiently alleged that Moody’s took ‘unfavorable personnel action’ against him after he reported what he believed were potential violations of the federal securities laws and SEC rules.”

 The Court’s decision reaffirms the rights of financial analysts, under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, to fulfill their responsibilities to shareholders and investors, free from the threat of retaliation by senior management.  Given Moody’s central role in the financial crisis of 2008, this decision is especially important.

 The Court dismissed Mr. Kolchinsky’s defamation and other related claims.

 Mr. Kolchinsky is represented by Joshua H. Reisman of Reisman Sorokac in Las Vegas, Nevada, and Todd J. Krouner and Diana M. Carlino of the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner in Chappaqua, New York.

A copy of Judge Crotty’s decision is available here.  For further information, please contact Joshua H. Reisman at (702) 727-6258, or Todd J. Krouner at (914) 238-5800.

If you or a loved one has been retaliated against, terminated or demoted, as a result of speaking out, or because of age, sex, religion, national origin, race or disability, you should promptly contact an attorney with experience in employment law.  The Law Office of Todd J. Krouner has a proven track record of helping victims of employment discrimination.  To determine if you have a strong case, contact us for a free consultation at (914) 238-5800.

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MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT DENIED IN CLAIM FOR INJURIES SUSTAINED IN FALL FROM FORKLIFT

October 12th, 2011

Ciro Alfonso v. Pacific Classon Realty, LLC

Supreme Court of the State of New York, County of Kings

Index No. 12885/06

By Order dated September 20, 2011, Hon. Mark I. Partnow, Kings County Supreme Court, denied defendants’ motion for summary judgment.

Plaintiff was attempting to remove a heating unit from the ceiling of a warehouse, at the direction of his employer, when the unit fell.  The force of the falling unit caused plaintiff to fall off a skid, elevated by a forklift, to the ground.  Plaintiff suffered serious personal injuries as a result.  Plaintiff received an award from the Workers’ Compensation Board, against his employer, D.S. Imports, Inc.  Plaintiff filed suit against defendants, as property owners or agents, under N.Y. Labor Law § 240.

Defendants moved for summary judgment, arguing that Workers’ Compensation Law barred any action against Delmar Sales, Inc.

Judge Partnow found that defendants “failed to demonstrate, as a matter of law, that plaintiff was their special employee…or that they were alter egos of, or engaged in a joint venture with, DS Imports, plaintiff’s employer.”  Judge Partnow also found that Workers’ Compensation Law does not bar plaintiff’s claim “merely because the relevant entities are owned by the same principals.”

Finally, Judge Partnow held that the removal of a broken heating unit from the ceiling of the warehouse is akin to “repair,” and not routine maintenance.  Therefore, plaintiff’s claim is viable under Labor Law §240.

The plaintiff is represented by Todd J. Krouner and Diana M. Carlino of the Law Office of Todd J. Krouner in Chappaqua, New York.  For further information, please contact them at (914) 238-5800.  A copy of Judge Partnow’s Order and Decision is available here.

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Dr. Owczarek Sued For LASIK Surgery Malpractice

October 5th, 2011

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Thomas Baird v. Frank R. Owczarek, M.D. and Eye Care of Delaware, LLC

In the Superior Court of the State ofDelaware, Case No. N11C-09-241 RRC

DR. OWCZAREK SUED FOR LASIK SURGERY MALPRACTICE

On September 3, 2011, Thomas Baird filed a complaint against Frank R. Owczarek, M.D., and Eye Care of Delaware, LLC, in the Superior Court of the State ofDelaware, for the negligent performance of LASIK surgery.

In January 2004, Dr. Owczarek performed LASIK surgery on both of Mr. Baird’s eyes. The complaint alleges that after the initial surgery failed, leaving Mr. Baird with visual acuity worse than 20/50 and 20/60, in his right and left eye, respectively, Dr. Owczarek proposed additional surgery on October 14, 2009. However, during the patient’s pre-enhancement eye examination, Dr. Owczarek failed to see signs of ectasia, for which LASIK surgery is contraindicated.  As a result, Mr. Baird is now legally blind in his left eye, and vision in his right eye is significantly worse than it was before the surgeries.

Ectasia is a disorder that causes progressive thinning and weakening of the cornea.  Patients with ectasia often suffer a loss of visual acuity.  In addition, individuals may suffer from a host of problems related to the quality of their vision, which include halos, blurry vision, glare, ghosting, starbursts, double vision, light sensitivity, contrast sensitivity, loss of depth perception, difficulty driving a motor vehicle, especially at night, headaches, dry eyes, and foreign body sensation.

Mr. Baird is represented by the Law Office of  Todd J. Krouner in Chappaqua, New York, and Hudson & Castle Law, of Wilmington, Delaware. Mr. Krouner represents victims of LASIK surgery throughout theUnited States. Mr. Hudson has extensive experience in litigating medical malpractice actions.

A copy of the complaint is available here. For further information, please contact Todd J. Krouner, Esq., at (914) 238-5800, or Bruce Hudson, Esq., at (302)504-8146.

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