EVW Partner Joe Johnson Obtains An Affirmance Before The Appellate Division, First Department

Commercial litigation partner Joe Johnson won an affirmance before the Appellate Division, First Department, of a major ruling in New York State Supreme Court denying the motion for summary judgment filed by the general counsel for a New York Hospital regarding his breach of contract claim against the Hospital.

The Hospital was sued for more than a million dollars by its former general counsel, claiming he was owed severance because he was not terminated for cause. In affirming the trial court, the Appellate Division found the general counsel did not meet his burden to address the merits of the Hospital’s affirmative defenses about the circumstances under which his contract was entered into and whether he breached any duty owed.

It also found that the Hospital had raised material fact issues about why its general counsel withheld information about being a target of an investigation by the Kings County District Attorney’s Office, and that such status may have rendered him incapable of continuing to serve as general counsel.