The Bronx plaintiff in this case is appealing an order from the Supreme Court of Westchester County. The order from the court denied the plaintiff’s motion for summary judgment on the issue of liability, dismissed the complaint made against the defendants, and granted portions of the cross motion of the defendants for summary judgment dismissing the complaint as it was alleged that the defendants committed legal malpractice by failing to interpose a claim in an underlying action of rescission based on a mistake.
The plaintiff is a home builder and in 1999 he started negotiations for the purchase of a home that he was building. For the negotiations he retained the defendants to represent him. In January of 2000, the plaintiff was ready to sign a contract of sale as well as a separate basement construction agreement. This contract had been forwarded to the defendant’s offices. The plaintiff executed the basement construction agreement, but then discovered that the buyers had not signed the attached contract of sale. This contract included additional terms that were not previously agreed to in the parties’ negotiations. As a consequence the plaintiff did not sign the contract of sale and told the defendant’s that the deal with the buyers was off and to proceed accordingly.