Commercial and Federal Litigation Section

  • Bench Bar 4
    An Evening With the Commercial Division Justices of the Tenth Judicial District June 21, 2016 | Melville Marriott | 1350 Walt Whitman Rd. | Melville, NY 11747
  • ComFed Rotatomg Slider Cyber Attack
    Data Security for the New York Litigator: 2016 Law and Practice or How to Maintain Competence in the Face of Constant Threats Thursday, June 2, 2016 | 8:00am until 12:00pm Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman & Dicker LLP | 150 East 42nd Street, New York City
  • CLE Programs and Events
    • June 2, 2016: Data Security for the New York Litigator


      Thursday, June 2, 2016 
      8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. 
      Venue: Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman &Dicker LLP
      150 East 42nd Street New York City 

      Cost to Attend: Com Fed Members: Free | NYSBA (Non-ComFed) Members: $50.00 | Non-NYSBA Members: $75.00 | Not a Section Member? NYSBA Members Can Join ComFed for only $40.00!

      3.0 MCLE Credit in Professional Practice. This program in not transitional, and therefore does not qualify for newly admitted attorneys 


      Why This Program is Important for NY Litigators:  Headlines about data breaches, hackers and risks from cyberattacks are as commonplace these days as scores on the sports page.  Information is the currency of the Digital Age and therefore it becomes a perpetual target for all types of actors hoping to exploit its value. While the press often focuses on the mega breaches commonly associated with major retailers (e.g. Target Corp), financial institutions (J.P. Morgan Chase and Co.), healthcare and insurance providers (e.g. Anthem Inc.) and government agencies (e.g. The US Office of Personnel Management), law firms of all sizes are quickly becoming prime targets as they often hold the most valuable types of information in the least protected environments.  According to the American Bar Association’s 2015 Legal Tech Survey, 15% of respondents reported that their firm experienced a breach event at some point with 23% overall stating that they were unaware of any breaches and only about 5% reporting that they notified a client or clients of a breach.  Litigators in New York frequently serve as the stewards of some of the most sensitive information for a broad range of clients, which means they must be well-versed not only in federal and state data security laws and regulations, but also in the standards, practices, and technologies that can be effective means of protecting client and firm data.  Such knowledge is not only a component of being a competent practitioner in modern litigation, but also could impact whether a lawyer can even continue to maintain a successful practice.

      This half-day program will develop an individual attorney’s ability to competently identify and address issues associated with data security in the context of the modern practice of law.  It will serve as a comprehensive springboard for the New York litigator to engage current and proposed federal and state laws and regulations surrounding data security, offer insight into key court opinions and enforcement actions including FTC v. Wyndham and Abdale v. North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health Sys., Inc., and present data security strategies, tips and real-world practices that litigators can readily integrate into their own practices.  

      8:15 a.m. - 8:55 p.m. - Arrival and Breakfast

      8:55 p.m. - 9:00 a.m. - Opening remarks: Welcome and Introduction 

      9:00 a.m. – 9:50 a.m: Key Federal and NYS Data Privacy & Security Laws and Trends

      • Shoshanah Bewlay, General Counsel and Director of Enterprise eDiscovery Services - NYS Office of Information Technology Services
      • Krista Ellis, Head of Litigation – Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank
      • Samantha Ettari, eDiscovery Counsel – Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel, LLP

      10:00 a.m. – 10:50 a.m: Enforcement Actions and New York Data Security Cases -- Key Takeaways and Trends

      • Gregory Bautista, Partner – Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman &Dicker LLP
      • Joseph DeMarco, Partner – Devore & Demarco LLP
      • Rebecca Kahan, Partner – Dechert LLP

      10:50 a.m. -- 11:00 a.m. -- Break: Coffee/Snacks

      11:00 a.m.  – 12:15 p.m:  Practical Data Security: What are NY Law Firms Doing

      • Jim Garrett, GCFA, CISSP, MBA, Chief Information Security Officer - NYS Office of Information Technology Services, Enterprise Information Security Office
      • Abel Sussman, Director of Public Sector Practice – Coalfire- Cyber Risk Management & Compliance
      • Kathryn Cole, Counsel – Farrell Fritz. P.C.
      • Tom RickettsSVP and Executive Director – Aon Risk Solutions

      12:15  p.m. -- 12:20 p.m. -- Closing remarks

      For questions contact Beth Gould at  To register over the phone contact our Member Resource Center at 1-800-582-2452. 

    • June 21, 2016: New York County Bench Bar Program


      Tuesday, June 21, 2016 

      Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP | 825 Eighth Avenue | New York, NY 10019

      6:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. Cocktail Hour
      7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. Panel Discussion
      8:30 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. Q & A

       2 MCLE Credits (1.5 in Professional Practice, 0.5 in Ethics)

      Cost to Attend: $40.00  


      The New York State Bar Association Commercial & Federal Litigation Section is pleased to present a bench-bar forum entitled: What Happens Next?  The New York County Commercial Division Judges Discuss the Application of the New Commercial Division Rules

      The evening will begin with an opportunity to network with Commercial Division judges and practitioners over snacks and drinks from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.  This will be followed by a lively panel discussion concerning lessons to be drawn from the implementation of recent rule-changes and prospects for further innovation.  Former Appellate Division First Department Justice James M. McGuire will moderate the discussion by our panel, which will be composed of members of the New York County Commercial Division Bench.  A dedicated Question and Answer session with the judges will follow.

      To register over the phone please contact the Member Resource Center at 1-800-582-2452

      For questions: Beth Gould at

    • June 21, 2016: Long Island Bench Bar Program


      Tuesday, June 21, 2016

      5:30 - 6:30 Cocktail Hour
      6:30 - 8:30 CLE Presentation

      Melville Marriott
      1350 Walt Whitman Rd
      Melville, NY 11747
      2 MCLE Credits (1.5 in Professional Practice, .5 in Ethics)
      Cost to attend: $60.00


      The New York State Bar Association Commercial & Federal Litigation Section and The Commercial Litigation Committee of the Nassau County Bar Association and the Commercial Division Committee of the Suffolk County Bar Association are pleased to present

      An Evening with the Commercial Division Judges of the Tenth Judicial District

      Hon. Stephen A. Bucaria
      Hon. Vito M. DeStefano
      Hon. Timothy S. Driscoll
      Hon. Elizabeth H. Emerson
      Hon. Jerry Garguilo
      Hon. James C. Hudson

      A “Meet and Greet” with the Commercial Division Judges from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., followed by a lively panel discussion: A Year in Retrospect. The New Commercial Division Rules and other current commercial litigation topics from the Judges' Perspective. Moderated by Harvey Besunder, co-chair of the Commercial Division Committee of the Suffolk Bar Association and Kevin Schlosser, Member of the Nassau County Commercial Litigation Committee.  A dedicated  Question and Answer session with the Judges will follow.

      Thank you to our sponsors: Realtime Reporting, Practical Law, Baker Tilly

      To Register over the phone please contact the State Bar Service Center at 1-800-582-2452

      For questions: Beth Gould at

  • Recent News & Events


    This webinar is sponsored by the eDiscovery Committee of the Commercial and Federal Litigation Section.

    On September 2, 2014, revised Rule 11-b of the Uniform Rules for the Supreme and County Courts went into effect and established a “preference” in the Commercial Division for the use of “categorical designations” in preparation of a privilege log.  The new rule calls for enhanced cooperation in this effort – but what does using a categorical priv log really mean?  How does it work in practice?  Our panel will consist of attorneys who have used categorical logs in their practice and can explain the pros, cons, and how-to of this approach to privilege.

    Royce Cohen, Esq., Tressler LLP
    Jennifer Levy, Esq., Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP 
    Jessica Perazzelli Ross, Esq., Deutsche Bank AG NY

    You can listen to the recording here: 

    The materials for today’s webinar are available online for you by visiting

    Report Issued: Social Media Jury Instructions Report

    Issued by the Social Media Committee and Approved by the Section's Executive Committee


    April 2016
    March 2016
    February 2016 
    January 2016
    December 2015
    November 2015
    October 2015
    September 2015
    May 2015


    By Jonathan Fellows

    On October 6, 2015, the New York State Bar Association’s Commercial and Federal Litigation Section presented the “Onondaga County Commercial Division Bench-Bar Forum.” The CLE event took place at the Conference Center at Bond, Schoeneck & King, PLLC’s Syracuse offi ce. Over sixty practitioners from Central New York attended the event, fi lling the room to capacity.

    Both of Onondaga County’s Commercial Division Justices, Deborah H. Karalunas and Donald A. Greenwood, participated in the Forum. Jonathan B. Fellows, of Bond, Schoeneck & King, who is the Section’s District Leader for the Commercial Division in the Fifth Judicial District, organized the event and served as Moderator. Mitchell J. Katz, Section Vice-Chair, and Teresa Bennett, Co-Chair of the Section’s Committee on the Commercial Division, both of Menter, Rudin & Trivelpiece P.C., attended and helped to organize the event.

    The program was one of several Bench-Bar Forums on the Commercial Division being held around the state in light of the promulgation of new rules for the Commercial Division and the 20th Anniversary of the establishment of the Commercial Division.

    Onondaga County’s Commercial Division is one of the ten Commercial Divisions that have been established across the state. Justice Karalunas was appointed Presiding Justice of the Commercial Division in Onondaga County in 2007. Justice Greenwood was appointed to hear cases in the Commercial Division in 2011. In addition to serving on commercial cases, Justice Greenwood handles the bulk of Onondaga County’s tax certiorari cases. This was the second CLE this year organized by the Section in which Justices Karalunas and Greenwood served as panelists. In March they were panelists in the Section’s “Social Media Legal Ethics: Litigating Commercial Cases and Marketing Your Practice,” which Jonathan Fellows also chaired and in which Section Chair-Elect Mark Berman participated as a panelist.

    Jonathan Fellows opened the Forum with a history of the Commercial Division and a discussion of the vision of Chief Judge Kaye and Chief Judge Lippman to create and maintain a world class forum for the adjudication of commercial disputes in New York Supreme Court. He then outlined the new rules for the Commercial Division, including the new language in the preamble to the Commercial Division rules regarding proportionality in discovery, which the Chief Administrative Judge had announced the day before the event.

    Justice Karalunas then led the practitioners through her new Preliminary Conference Stipulation and Order for commercial cases, which has been drafted to implement the new rules, and discussed the New York City Bar Association’s model Stipulation and Order for the Production and Exchange of Confi dential Information, which she has referenced in her form Stipulation. Both Justices asked the practitioners for input and suggestions on the form Stipulation.

    The Forum then proceeded with questions to the Justices from the audience, as well as questions from the Justices to the attorneys. In addition to the new rules, the Forum discussed whether a mediation program for commercial cases should be established in Onondaga County, expert witness discovery, and the preferences of chambers for resolving discovery disputes. The Forum was well received by both the Bench and the Bar, and the Section greatly appreciated the time that Justices Karalunas and Greenwood devoted to the Forum.

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  • Section Publications


    The NYLitigator features peer-written substantive articles relating to the practice of commercial and federal litigation on various topics, including discovery; mediation; settlements; corporate liability; and due process. Section Reports, written by various Commercial and Federal Litigation Committees, are often featured in each issue. The NYLitigator is published by the Commercial and Federal Litigation Section and distributed to Section Members free of charge.
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    The Commercial and Federal Litigation Section Newsletter features updates on Section activities, programs and events; recent legislation; and information about current issues. The Commercial and Federal Litigation Section Newsletter is published three times per year by the Commercial and Federal Litigation Section and distributed to Section members free of charge.
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