Fair Housing

    • Injunction of Subsidized Low Income Housing
      Partner John G. Hall led the firm’s attorneys in enjoining subsidized low income housing in an area that was about to tip into a low income area. The firm prevailed in the Federal District Court, the ruling was affirmed by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals and certiorari was denied in the United States Supreme Court. The case was written up in numerous law reviews and has been cited numerous times.


Guardianship Protection

    • Return of Misappropriated Funds
      The Attorney-in-Fact for one of our elderly clients had misappropriated a portion of our client’s funds and moved him away to the Everglades of Florida to avoid scrutiny by his many friends. Partners John G. Hall and Lainie R. Fastman commenced both a Guardianship Proceeding as well as a Habeas Corpus (literally “produce the body”) proceeding. As a result, the Attorney-in-Fact was forced to reveal the whereabouts of his ward and a substantial amount of money was protected against further dissipation by the miscreant Attorney-in-Fact who fled the country.
    • Formation of a Special Needs Trust
      Partner Lainie R. Fastman secured the first reformation of a testamentary trust into a special needs trust in the Richmond County Surrogate's Court. This legal action preserved the trust from the claims of Medicaid and permitted the trustee to provide "extras" to the beneficiary, while preserving the trust fund for the benefit of the incapacitated beneficiary.
    • Guardianship to Avoid Litigation
      Partner Lainie R. Fastman was engaged by the sons of a widower who was suffering from Alzheimer's disease, and whose new spouse had charmed him into marriage, re-titled a number of his accounts, and changed the deed to his home to herself and her offspring. In the context of a guardianship proceeding, Ms. Fastman secured a settlement in which all properties were returned to the father, while the spouse retained her married status, so as to secure her husband's social security benefits in the event of his predecease. This legal strategy avoided a lengthy trial, much to the advantage to the client.
    • Recovering Stolen Trust Funds
      Partner John G. Hall recovered the full proceeds of a Trust made by the physician’s paternal grandfather of a client for his granddaughter, which had been stolen by her mother after the father’s death.



  • Reversing a Court Decision to Recover Lender Funds
    Partner John G. Hall prosecuted an appeal for a lender client, reversing a decision of a lower court that set aside deeds and mortgages that had been assigned to the lender client. As a result the lender was able to recover in full.

Trusts & Estates – Planning, Administration and Litigation

    • Relocation of Surrogate’s Court Contest
      Partner Lainie R. Fastman was engaged by the son of an deceased elderly widower whose sister had taken their father to her upstate New York home just weeks prior to the man’s death, and then filed a petition for the probate of a will in her favor that she had strong-armed her father into signing. Ms. Fastman was able to add an amendment to the death certificate so that the probate contest was moved to the Surrogate’s Court in her father’s county of residence, allowing the client to obtain justice.
    • Successful Resolution to a 31-Year Estate Dispute
      Partner John G. Hall put an end to a contested estate that had been in Surrogate’s Court for 31 years, and had been with the firm for the last three years. Numerous real estate issues revolving around a Gatsby mansion were resolved to our client’s satisfaction and a substantial financial recovery.

Real Estate

    • Equitable Mortgage Subrogation
      In New York State Supreme Court, Kings County, partner John G. Hall successfully established that a client was entitled to payment in its mortgage foreclosure action on the basis of equitable subrogation of a mortgage claimed to be usurious, to the extent the new mortgage paid off a prior mortgage that was not usurious.

    • Mortgage Lien Recovery
      Partner John G. Hall recovered $792,918 from a defendant, which induced a client to release a portion of mortgaged premises from a mortgage lien, based on the promise to provide substitute collateral for the mortgage. When it failed to do so, the action was commenced.
    • $45 Million Commercial Mortgage Transaction
      Partner Thomas J. Hall represented the owners of three apartment buildings in connection with a $45 million Commercial Mortgage Backed Security (CMBS) refinance. This transaction enabled the principals to obtain non-recourse financing at a favorable interest rate and provided significant cash out to the clients.

Business & Corporate Law

    • Defeat of $25 Million Lawsuit
      Partner Thomas J. Hall successfully defeated a $25 million lawsuit, at both the trial and appellate level, brought by a major financial institution against a major nationwide mortgage lender seeking to enforce a money judgment based on a de facto merger theory.

    • Recovering Embezzled Funds
      Partner Thomas J. Hall successfully recovered approximately $1.2 million embezzled by an employee of a major financial institution by pursuing remedies in both state court and in criminal forfeiture proceedings in the U.S. District Court.


    • $1.8 Billion Line of Credit
      Partner Thomas J. Hall represented a major financial institution in closing a $1.8 billion mortgage warehouse line of credit to a major nationwide residential mortgage lender.

    • Truth-in-Lending Case
      Partner Thomas J. Hall successfully defended a co-op lender at a bench trial in U.S. District Court in a truth-in-lending case in which the borrower sought an overturn of the loan and damages for alleged violations of the truth-in-lending statue and Regulation Z of the Federal Reserve Board.
    • Bookkeeper Forgery
      Partner Thomas J. Hall successfully defended a forgery claim against a bank by a depositor whose bookkeeper embezzled more than $300,000 by forging the business owner’s signature on numerous checks.


Mechanics Liens

  • Lien Law Trust Fund Violations
    Partner John G. Hall procured a Court decision subordinating a $26 million mortgage of a major lender to Mechanics Lienors as a result of the lender’s trust fund violations of the lien law.