ALTERNATIVE DISPUTE RESOLUTION

Alternative Dispute Resolution

At Smith Mazure, we believe our commitment to alternative forums for resolution is often in our client's best interest. Often the most appropriate means to resolving a claim is through one of the many forums for Alternative Dispute Resolution including Binding and Non-binding Arbitration, Mediation, Bulk Settlement Days and Defense Agreements.

We take pride in our ability to recognize the impediments to settlement and use our skills to foster Claims Resolution through alternative means.

APPELLATE PRACTICE

Appellate Practice

Our experienced Appellate Practice attorneys work closely with their colleagues when a case moves from the lower courts to one of higher jurisdiction. This allows our appellate attorneys to take advantage of the insights of the attorney who handled the case in the lower court, creating a relationship that fosters better results and cost efficiencies.

Issues taken to the appellate level have included Premises and Security matters, Lead Paint Litigation, No-Fault Threshold cases and Construction and Labor Law lawsuits.

AUTOMOBILE AND TRANSPORTATION

Automobile and Transportation

Understanding that a bad loss run can devistate a company, Smith Mazure has taken its responsibility to this industry segment very seriously.

Accident litigation is a major concern for owners and operators of bus companies, limousines, automobile fleets and other motor vehicle transportation entities. A major target of fraudulent lawsuits, ranging from simple "build up" cases to the outright staged accident and "jump in," the transportation client is vulnerable to significant loss.

Working closely with special investigative units and legal enforcement agencies, our attorneys, through extensive experience, can assist in identifying fraudulent cases and provide the best front-line defense plan from the onset. When litigation is aken to verdict, our Attorneys provide a defense that is comprehensive and meticulous - always focused on protecting the clients bottom-line.

CIVIL RIGHTS AND DISCRIMINATION LITIGATION

Civil Rights Litigation

With many years of experience representing Municipal and Governmental entities and their employees, we have developed an expertise in the handling of Civil Rights litigation. Having successfully litigated cases involving civil rights, false arrest and sexual harassment, our attorneys are second to none in defending our clients from allegations of civil rights violations.

Whether involving State or Federal allegations, our attorneys focus on the appropriate defense. We are also involved in the procurement of insurance coverage on behalf of our clients when dealing with such claims.

CLAIMS MANAGEMENT

Claims Management

When the need arises we work closely with our client insurance carriers and self-insureds in the management of their claims. Acting as Coordinating Counsel, we often oversee the management of claims without actually representing the defendant.

In fact, we have taken over the claims handling of large blocks of cases for the purpose of reducing the claims volume. Through hands-on claims management and the use of Alternative Dispute Resolution techniques, we have helped numerous clients control their litigation in a cost effective and timely manner.

CONSTRUCTION ACCIDENTS

Construction Accidents

Our attorneys are well versed in Sections 200, 240 and 241 of the Labor Law. Whether the injured party fell from a scaffold, tripped on debris, or was struck by a falling object, the Construction Accidents Group at Smith Mazure will resolve the case.

Our commitment to our clients does not just stop at the resolution of the case. We feel that educating our clients on measures that can be taken to reduce and even prevent similar problems in the future, is the most important part of our jobs.

CONSTRUCTION DEFECT

Construction Defect

Whether we are dealing with design deficiencies, material deficiencies, construction deficiencies (poor quality or substandard workmanship), our attorneys have the experience and expertise to professionally handle.

Working closely with the appropriate experts, our attorneys gain the necessary knowledge to get to the heart of the claim and prepare an effective defense. We believe there is no substitute for preparation.

DIRECTORS AND OFFICERS

Directors and Officers

In recent years, there has been heightened public scrutiny of boards and senior management, of private, public and not-for-profit enterprises.  This scrutiny has led to increased litigation and new challenges that directors and officers must address on a daily basis.  Smith Mazure has the experience to provide company management and directors common sense, cost effective, resolution plans that address the legal and public relations concerns of these challenges.

Smith Mazure's D&O team is able to promptly evaluate litigation claims and is regularly called upon to monitor complex litigation; coordinate joint defense efforts; provide defense and compliance guidance; and analyze liability, damages and coverage.  We believe that the best defenses are those that are put into place before a claim arises, and we work closely with underwriters to draft policy language and endorsements that avoid ambiguity and minimize the risk of coverage challenges.  Our attorneys regularly act as coverage counsel, advising primary and excess insurers.

ERRORS & OMISSIONS

Errors & Omissions

Mistakes happen even with professionals. When they happen to accountants, attorneys and other professionals, lawsuits loom. Only the best legal advice will do in dealing with allegations of errors or negligence. Smith Mazure's team of attorneys stand ready to tackle the job. For an auditor, we might handle a charge of failing to detect fraud; for an attorney, an ethical lapse; for a real estate agent, an omission in a sales contract. Whatever the allegation, Smith Mazure can handle the fallout. We represent individuals and institutions, as well as the insurance companies that provide their liability coverage. Working closely with clients, our attorneys formulate a defense strategy and a plan that will resolve the problem with the least expense. We encourage mediation and arbitration of disputes when appropriate. When necessary, we represent professionals before administrative agencies and licensing boards, as well as in court. We call on expert consultants for assistance in defending professionals against accusations.

EXCESS RISK CLAIMS

Excess Risk Claims

When our clients have an excess policy applicable to a large loss claim, they turn to us to monitor the case on their behalf. Our attorneys do not just request copies of correspondence, they also review the underlying file and attend all substantive depositions and conferences to ensure appropriate defense by primary counsel.

By staying involved in the suit, we recognize not only when the case is ready to be settled, we also identify those issues that the primary carrier may have missed. We make sure that important details are not overlooked by primary carriers who need to contain their own cost.

INSURANCE COVERAGE LITIGATION

Insurance Coverage Litigation

Smith Mazure's Insurance Coverage Group represents insurance carriers and their insureds in all aspects of insurance law. We are involved in Declaratory Judgment Litigation both as plaintiff and defendant. In many cases, when the underlying injury lawsuit ends, our Coverage Group is just beginning their efforts to enforce the clients' claims to insurance coverage.

Many of the attorneys in our Coverage Group have had articles published on Insurance Coverage in the New York Law Journal as well as The Defendant, the publication of the Defense Association of New York.

LEAD PAINT, MOLD AND TOXIC TORT LITIGATION

Lead Paint, Mold and Toxic Tort

Lead Paint Poisoning is one of the fastest growing areas of Toxic Tort Litigation. Smith Mazure has been at the forefront of this area of law, representing landlords since the inception of these cases. With the assistance of some of the leading experts in the field, we have created strategies to successfully defend building owners in Lead Paint Poisoning cases.

We also represent defendants in every area of Toxic Tort Litigation, including Asbestosis Claims and Water Pollution. In addition, we handle Insurance Coverage Issues in these matters, including litigation involving pollution exclusions.

NO FAULT/UNINSURED MOTORIST COVERAGE

No Fault/Uninsured Motorist Coverage

No-Fault/Uninsured Motorist litigation is an area of practice that not every attorney has the background to handle. At Smith Mazure, we make sure the right attorneys are assigned to each case. Our No-Fault/Uninsured Motorist team stands ready to provide our clients with the expertise, skill and know how necessary to handle the claim.

PREMISES, PROPERTY AND SECURITY LIABILITY

Premises, Property and Security Liability

Smith Mazure has successfully represented defendants in every type of premises liability lawsuit from the simple trip and fall to the complex security claim. Security cases that are particularly sensitive, force us to overcome not only the general prejudice against landlords in New York City, but the highly emotional aspect of the case. Our Premises and Security Liability Group works with leading security experts to develop strategies that work in the defense of our client's interests.

PRODUCTS LIABILITY

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At Smith Mazure we take a unique approach to Products Liability Litigation. Our attorneys get to the heart of the problem by becoming experts because we believe there is no substitute for preparation.

Our Product Liability Group consists of seasoned litigators who have significant experience litigating cases involving handheld power tools and wood working equipment such as table saws, shapers, planers and miter saws as well as an array of other products such as lacquer/paint, stoves, flammable fabrics and foodstuffs. In addition, we represent major furniture manufacturers and prefabricated concrete foundation manufacturers as well as many industry leaders whose products are widely used in home workshops, building and construction trades, industry and schools.

SUBROGATION

Subrogation

Our Subrogation Group has extensive experience in pursuing subrogation claims relating to a wide variety of damage and casualty losses.

Over the years, we have recovered damages in cases involving, among other things, automobiles, defective products, water leaks and fires.

 

New York, NY Office

NEW YORK

111 John Street, 20th Floor
New York, NY 10038

T: 212.964.7400
F: 212.374.1935

 

 

New Jersey Office

NEW JERSEY

92 East Main Street, Suite 402
Somerville, NJ 08876

T: 908.393.7300
F: 908.231.1030

 

 

Long Island Office

LONG ISLAND

200 Old Country Road, Suite 590
Mineola, NY 11501

T: 516.414.7400
F: 516.294.7325