NJ Law Journal Reports today:
A criminal defense lawyer sued for malpractice should have been allowed to pursue evidence to bolster his claim that the ex-client was convicted because he was guilty, an appeals court says. Tuesday’s precedential ruling in Marrero v. Feintuch, A-5879-09, reverses a decision quashing a subpoena issued on behalf of Howard Feintuch, of Feintuch, Porwich & Feintuch in Jersey City.
Hudson County Superior Court Judge Bernadette DeCastro found the evidence was not relevant and that the “suit within a suit” approach should not be used in trying criminal legal malpractice actions. But the Appellate Division ruled that whether Jeffrey Marrero committed the crime was relevant to whether he was harmed by Feintuch’s alleged negligence, and that whether the suit-within-a-suit format was to be used should be decided at the end of discovery.