Sections & Committees

Real Property Law Section

2019 Landlord Tenant Update
2.0 MCLE Credits: 2.0 Areas of Professional Practice

Wednesday, May 22, 2019
6 pm – 8 pm (dinner provided)

Borah Goldstein Altschuler Nahins & Goidel, P.C.
377 Broadway
New York, N.Y. 10013

NYSBA Real Property Law Section Members: Free
NYSBA members: To attend, 
Join the Real Property Law Section for $40

Committee and Program Chairs
Paul N. Gruber, Borah Goldstein Altschuler Nahins & Goidel, P.C., New York, NY 
Peter Kolodny, Esq., Kolodny P.C., New York, NY

Program Faculty 
Dan M. Blumenthal, Esq.
Wenig Saltiel LLP
Brooklyn, NY

This meeting is free to you as a benefit of your membership in the Real Property Law Section. If you would like to invite others to attend, they simply need to be a member of the NYSBA RPLS, and they can attend the meeting for free.

Join the Real Property Law Section for $40 (NYSBA membership required)

To allow for proper security entrance and quantities for catering and materials, please register for this event by Friday, May 17, 2019.

When registering online please be sure to complete your transaction by selecting “Add to Cart,” “Check Out,” and “Place Your Order.” If your order is not placed, your registration has not been processed. You will receive an automatically generated email confirmation of your registration from the database overnight.

For assistance with joining the Real Property Law Section or NYSBA, or to register for this program, please contact the Member Resource Center at: 1 (800) 582-2452.


Live CLE Program 
Tuesday, June 4, 2019

RIT Inn & Conference Center
5257 West Henrietta Road
Rochester, NY 14467

7.5 MCLE Credits: 6.5 Areas of Professional Practice; 1.0 Ethics

Co-Sponsoring Section Member: $150
NYSBA Member: $175 | Non-Member: $275


Program Description
This program will present a practical “nuts and bolts” approach to New York’s judicial commercial mortgage foreclosure process. The program will cover pre-foreclosure initial steps, steps for the lender, judicial foreclosure and court appointed officials, the foreclosure sale and post-sale issues, mortgage foreclosure from the Defendant's perspective, bankruptcy matters, mortgage loan workouts, and confronting potential ethical concerns or challenges.  

Who Should Attend
Attorneys who practice in the area of real property and land use.  

Sponsored by the Real Property Law Section and the Committee on Continuing Legal Education.


Agenda Topics

  • Pre-Foreclosure Initial Steps 
  • Mortgage Foreclosure - Steps for the Lender
  • Judicial Foreclosure - Court Appointed Officials
  • Foreclosure Sale and Post-Sale Issues
  • Mortgage Foreclosure from the Defendant's Perspective
  • Bankruptcy Issues
  • Mortgage Loan Workouts and Related Issues
  • Ethical Matters 

Program Co-Chairs
Robert A. Wolf, Esq., Tarter Krinsky & Drogin LLP, NYC
Anthony J. Adiutori, Esq., Davidson Fink, LLP, Rochester 

Program Faculty 
Robert A. Wolf, Esq., Tarter Krinsky & Drogin LLP, NYC
Suzanne M. Berger, Esq., Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner , LLP, NYC
Michele Lippa Gartner, Esq., Office of Court Administration, NYC
Thomas J. Hall, Esq., Hall & Hall LLP, Staten Island 

Anthony J. Adiutori, Esq., Davidson Fink, LLP, Rochester
Lucien A. Morin, II, Esq., McConville, Considine, Cooman & Morin, P.C., Rochester 
Heather C.M. Rogers, Esq., Davidson Fink, LLP, Rochester 



Newly Admitted Attorneys: To receive skills credit, newly admitted attorneys must take accredited transitional CLE courses in traditional live classroom settings that have been approved by the CLE Board for use by newly admitted attorneys.  For more information about the CLE Rules, please go to

Out of State Accreditation: This program has also been approved for MCLE credit by the State Bar of California, the Pennsylvania Continuing Legal Education Board and the Board of Continuing Legal Education of the State of New Jersey.  If you require MCLE credit in other states, we can provide you a Uniform MCLE Form.

Partial Credit for Program Segments Not Allowed: Under the New York State Continuing Legal Education Board Regulations and Guidelines, attendees at CLE programs cannot get MCLE credit for a program segment (typically, a lecture or panel, of which there are usually several in a program) unless they are present for the entire segment. Those who arrive late, depart early, or are absent for any portion of the segment WILL NOT receive credit for that program segment.


Click on the Program Date to Register for that Location!  

Wednesday, June 5, 2019 | Syracuse
Friday, June 14, 2019 | Rochester
Tuesday, June 18, 2019 | Buffalo

Wednesday, June 19, 2019 | Albany 
Wednesday, June 19, 2019 | Tarrytown

Thursday, June 20, 2019 | Melville 

Friday, June 21, 2019 | NYC 

7.0 MCLE Credits: 3.5 Areas of Professional Practice; 2.5 Skills; 1.0 Ethics

Co-Sponsoring Section Member: $150
NYSBA Member: $175 | Non-Member: $275

Real Property Law Section and the Committee on Continuing Legal Education
Real Property Law Section Chair, Thomas J. Hall, Esq., The Law Firm of Hall & Hall, LLP, Staten Island

Not Able to Attend in Person? 
This program will be recorded and available for purchase enabling you to watch on your schedule and earn your MCLE credits.


The New York State Bar Association’s Real Property Law Section and the Committee on Continuing Legal Education are pleased to present Purchases & Sales of Homes 2019. 

Program Description
Whether new to the practice area or an experience real estate practitioner in need of a refresher, this program will provide a comprehensive step-by-step guide and practical tips for attorneys handling all aspects related to the purchase or sale of a home.  Learn how to handle pre-contract matters including dealing with brokers and property inspection, clause-by-clause review of contract drafting and negotiation including mortgage contingency clause issues, mortgage financing, title and survey examination and insurance, pulling it all together at the closing table, and ethical issues related to the sale of homes.    

Who Should Attend
New and experienced real property law and general practitioners.  

Agenda Topics

  • Pre-Contract Considerations
  • Contract Drafting and Negotiation
  • Mortgage Financing
  • Title Examination and Disposition of Objections
  • Survey Examination
  • Ethics and Professionalism
  • Preparing for Closing; Closing; Post-Closing Matters

Program Co-Chairs
Scott A. Sydelnik, Esq., Davidson Fink LLP, Rochester
Ariel Weinstock, Esq., Katsky Korins LLP, NYC  

Program Faculty 

Chair: Alice Breding, Esq., Law Office of Alice M. Breding, PLLC, Clifton Park 

Chair: Roy Mendonza, Esq., Law Offices of Nancy W. Saia, Buffalo
Nancy W. Saia, Esq., Law Offices of Nancy W. Saia, Buffalo
Nicole E. Fenz, Esq., Law Offices of Gary M. Schaff, Buffalo
Michael Blinkoff, Esq., Blinkoff & Blinkoff, P.C., Buffalo
Paul T. Nesper, Esq., Nesper, Ferber, DiGiacomo, Johnson & Grimm, LLP, Buffalo

Long Island 
Chair: Benjamin Weinstock, Esq., Ruskin Moscou Faltischek, P.C., Uniondale
Kenneth Elan, Esq., Attorney At Law, NYC
Adam Sherman, Esq., Bank of America Home Loans, NYC
Jerry S. Leibner, Esq., The Seaport Title Agency, Freeport
Ariel Weinstock, Esq., Katsky Korins, LLP, NYC
Heather Siegelman, Esq., Great Neck
Richard Grayson, Esq., White Plains 

Chair: Daniel M. Kessler, Esq., Katsky Korins LLP, NYC
Mindy H. Stern, Esq., Schwartz Sladkus Reich Greenberg & Atlas LLP, NYC
Scott Claman, Esq., Giddins Claman LLP, NYC
James H. Lee, Esq., Madison Title Agency, Lakewood, NJ
Daniel M. Kessler, Esq, Katsky Korins LLP, NYC
Jerry Leibner, Esq., Seaport Abstract, A Division of LandStar Title Agency Inc., Freeport
William T. McCaffery,Esq.,  L’Abbate, Balkan, Colavita & Contini,  LLP, Garden City

Chair: Scott Sydelnik, Esq., Davidson Fink LLP, Rochester

Chair: Ann McGrath, Esq., Law Office of Ann McGrath, Liverpool 
Ronda T. Akl, Esq., Ronda T. Akl and Associates, PLLC
Rocco Mangano, Esq., Mangano Law Office, Syracuse
William H. Bradt, Esq., Bradt-Luciani Real Property Services, Syracuse
Mary E. Gasparini, Esq., Attorney Grievance Committee Fifth Judicial District, Syracuse
Jeffrey B. Davis, Esq., Law Office of Jeffrey B. Davis, Camillus

Chair: Denise P. Ward, Esq., Grean & Ward, Port Chester 
Robert J. Zaccagnino, Esq., New Rochelle
Alfred T. Renauto, Esq., White Plains 
Jean M. Partridge, Esq., Benchmark Title Agency LLC, White Plains
Richard E. Grayson, Esq., Law Offices of Richard E. Grayson, White Plains 

Real Property Law Section Summer Meeting

July 11-14, 2019
The Equinox Resort & Spa
Manchester, VT

Registration discounts will be available for RPLS members who are first time attendees to the Real Property Law Section Summer Meeting. 

Great CLE topics are being planned, as well as social events at Hildene, The Lincoln Family Home, and the Southern Vermont Arts Center.

Market your firm or organization

There are many sponsorship options available to you – from a breakfast break to a dinner, or the exclusive Gold Sponsorship.  There are options for every budget!  
Sponsorship Brochure- View the various sponsorship opportunities available

Reserve Your Hotel Room

The Equinox, a Luxury Collection Golf Resort & Spa is tucked into the Green Mountains in the picturesque town of Manchester, Vermont. The resort offers a definitive hospitality experience in southern Vermont with impeccable service and the latest in modern conveniences and amenities.

A room block has been reserved for attendees of the RPLS Summer Meeting. 
Rate is $305.00 single/double room plus taxes and discounted daily resort fee in the Main Hotel.
Check in: 4:00 pm Check out: 11:00 am. Guests must guarantee the reservation by credit card.
Visit to reserve your room today.

View Program Brochure with Registration Form 

For more information about this conference, please contact Tiffany Bardwell at

Graciously sponsored by:

Regal Title Agency
JB Risk Services
New York State Land Title Association
Evans Fox LLP
Pederson & Sons Surety Bond


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

1.            On what date will I no longer be able to post a message on a RPLS Listserve?

As of Friday, April 24, 2015, the Listserves will no longer be available but after logging in just once to the general RPLS Community you will be able to receive and post via email just as you did on the Listserves.  It is a one-time setup process and will take less than 5 minutes.

2.            How do I log in for the first time?

  • Go to In the top right corner, you will see a button that says Sign In (have your NYSBA username and password ready). The Community link is also accessible at the top of
  • Once signed in, you will see a drop down menu in the top right corner. Click Profile and go to My Account. Under My Account, choose Email Preferences. Scroll to Community Emails and hit Configure Your Subscriptions.
  • Here, you can choose your email settings of Real Time, Daily Digest, Plain Text or No Email (further explained in Question 5).

3.            How do I set up a separate Inbox in Outlook or other standard email formats?

In Outlook, right-click on your Inbox and hit New Folder. You can create a rule that automatically moves all Community emails to this new folder.

4.            Will I need to set up a signature block or enter my name and other information each time I post a message?

No, your contact information as it appears on your NYSBA privacy setting will automatically appear.  You may also modify this information or pull in a LinkedIn profile.  In order to modify your contact information or supply your LinkedIn profile, please see the longer announcement which appears on the RPLS portion of the NYSBA website.

5.            What are my choices for how I receive or view messages?

  • Real Time: you will receive messages live as you would from the Listserve.
  • Daily Digest: one clean email mailed with a list of the discussion threads from each day; it is mailed after 12:00 a.m.
  • Plain Text: if you prefer the original Listserve text.
  • No email:  if you use the App, you can receive notifications in place of email.

6.            Can I also access the Community from my smart phone?

Yes, simply go to the App or Google Play Store, search for NYSBA Communities, load the App and then search for the RPLS Communities and select your Community.  (Entries will appear on your phone in order of posting rather than as a thread.) The App is highly recommended as the set up is quick and you can access your messages wherever you go.

7.            Is there an email address for the Community?

Yes, it is You can respond to any discussion thread directly from your email, either to the section or directly to the sender. 

You can also use these emails to post to the Community: 
Real Property Law Section:

Real Property Law Section Committee on Condominiums and Coops:

Real Property Law Section Committee on Construction:

Dear Real Property Law Section Members:

            We are happy to introduce you to the NYSBA’s online professional communities and the upcoming launch of three new RPLS Communities tailored to our membership.  These Communities will be a resource for our members to facilitate enhanced communications and networking between members. The RPLS will be able to capture communications between members and build a repository of real property law topics.

            This announcement provides a general introduction to the NYSBA communities, provides basic instructions for their use and information as to how you establish or enhance your profile.  It also includes an explanation for developing Communities dedicated to  the RPLS membership and the transfer from the current Listserves to the RPLS Communities.

            On January 5, 2015, we began a soft launch to allow some of our members to test the waters and communicate via the RPLS Communities.  This both gave us an opportunity to incorporate suggestions to engineer a smooth launch and allowed us to establish content in the form of initial discussions submitted by these members. 

            After seeing that a number of the prior Listserve accounts had no activity within the past year and some had very few messages posted, a decision was made to proceed with three Communities formed from the membership of the most active Listserves.  Beginning on April 6, 2015, you will no longer be able to post new messages on eight (8) of the eleven (11) existing Listserves however an archive of the prior posts will remain available for several months. 

Launching the RPLS Communities

Effective April 6, 2015, the hard launch will take place and three new RPLS Communities will be activated:

  • 1)The Real-Property Forum Community; and
  • 2)The Real-Condos Community; and
  • 3)The Real-Executive Community. 

            The prior members of the like-named Listserves will have their memberships transferred over to the new Communities.  All current RPLS members will become members of the Real-Property Forum Community.  The current members of the Committee on Condominiums and Cooperatives will become members of the Real-Condos Community.  New members will be able to select their preferences upon joining.  And the membership of the Real-Executive Community will be limited to members of the Executive Committee.  As of April 24, 2015, no further postings may be made on the above-noted Listserves.

General Community Information

            Community messages will have a different appearance and you may need to adjust your email filtering rules to allow the Community addresses into your In boxes.  Specific instructions for Outlook and Gmail users will be provided on the RPLS portion of the NYSBA website as we move forward.

            In addition to offering an online discussion feature, the new Communities provide a new tool called the Resource Library.  This is an unlimited repository of information.  Any member may add information to the Resource Library and any member may access information in the Resource Library.  We envision this could be used to share a case, a form or newly issued memoranda.  You will be able to post an item in the Resource Library simply by attaching a file to a discussion post just like you attach a document to an email message.  The Resource Library can accept all types of files (PDFs, documents, spreadsheets, presentations, audio files, videos and links). 

            The Communities also offer an online searchable directory.  Each user has a profile based on information provided to the  NYSBA upon becoming a member.  In addition, members will be able to adjust this information as you wish.  Users can also update their profiles with additional information or add a photo.  Our members will be able to import their LinkedIn profiles by clicking one button. 

            Community member profiles make up the member directory for a given Community and provide members of a common Community group with the opportunity to contact one another outside of formal discussion threads.  Click here to view a short video outlining the basic aspects of Communities.

            The NYSBA has focused on your internet privacy concerns in designing the Communities.  NYSBA’s Communities allow users to control their personal privacy settings at all times and on every portion of their profiles.  No commercial search engines are allowed to index information from NYSBA Communities and internal search results are only available to those logged in as members of that specific Community.

            As mentioned above, current members of three RPLS Listserves will be automatically subscribed to the like new Community using existing subscription preferences. 

Communities offer several options for access on your computer or with an App:

  • Real Time:  Members with Real Time subscription settings will receive messages from their group as they are posted.  These are formatted HTML messagesReal Time subscribers may interact with their Community entirely through email.  Real Time subscribers can reply to the discussion through their email or they may reply to either the sender or the discussion using the embedded links on the right side of every message.  These right-hand links also make it easy to load content onto the Resource Library.  Log in instructions are available below.
  • Daily Digest: Members who choose to subscribe to the Daily Digest format will receive one email per day from their Community after messages on a certain topic have been posted.  The Daily Digest compiles numerous messages into a string by topic and users can respond to various threads using the embedded links in the Digest.  You can click on a specific thread or scroll to the bottom of your Daily Digest email for specific messages.  At the top of each message are two options:  Reply All Online (log-in required) or Reply All Email (operates like the current Listserves).
  • Legacy: Subscribers who prefer a plain text display (the classic Listserve format with mime code) may select the Legacy format.  Legacy subscribers will receive messages as they are posted and may participate through email only. 
  • Mobile App: A Communities mobile app is available to NYSBA members from the App Store or the Google Play Store but not via a Blackberry.  Using the App is fast and easy.  Search NYSBA in either store and download the app.  Then, search under RPLS.  You do not need to create a separate email account or log in. Community entries will come in one at a time but they can be searched by member name, by date or by a subject or term which was part of the entry. 

            Instructions to get started with NYSBA Communities online:

  • 1.Go to and click LOGIN on the top banner.  Login with your NYSBA username and password.  If you want to have the system remember your username and password, check the box below the LOGIN.  (If you require assistance you may call the NYSBA Service Center at 800-582-2452.)
  • 2.Once you have logged in, click Communities on the upper right or go directly to
  • 3.On your first visit to the Communities portion of the website, you will be asked to accept the Terms and Conditions.  Review the document and click on “I agree.” at the bottom to continue.
  • 4.Next click on your Profile in the upper right corner.  Initially you will have a basic profile from the membership database which can be edited as you wish.  This is the information that will be posted when you make an entry. You can also add a photo, enter additional information or load an existing LinkedIn profile. Here you can also manage your privacy settings from the “Privacy” tab on your Profile.
  • 5.After you finish editing your profile, you can begin entering and using the RPLS Communities.  In order to view the RPLS Communities to which you are automatically a member, click the Communities link on your profile (upper right corner of every page) or click on the Groups tab on the navigation bar and choose MyGroups from the dropdown menu.
  • 6.Users can change their subscription settings to match their needs.  You can manage your subscriptions from the MyProfile navigation link and the MyAccount sub-menu (Email Preferences). You may change your email signature under My Account and the Discussion Signature. Current members of the RPLS will not need to select a subscription type as you will automatically be subscribed to your existing preferences.  New members of the RPLS or those who have not previously used one of the three prior Listserves whose members will be transferred to one of the new Communities will need to set up subscription preferences when entering their first discussion post. 
  • 7.Members who require additional assistance may email or with your questions or requests for assistance.

We look forward to joining you in the Communities!


Susan Scharbach

Michael Stevens

Andrew Posil


Each year, the Real Property Law Section has honored an outstanding individual real estate practitioner with its Professionalism Award. The Section’s Award Committee is seeking nominations for the 2020 award, to be presented at the Section’s Annual Meeting luncheon on January 30, 2020.

Some of the criteria which are used to identify an individual are as follows: 

1.  The nominee possesses in her/his practice a continuing civility and appreciation for others.

2.  The individual possess an outstanding level of competence ­legal ability ­and achievement.

3.  The nominee has in her/his practice made a strong contribution to the development of the practice of law, the improvement of the practice of law, particularly in the field of education­frequent lectures in CLE programs­writings­publications. 

4.  The nominee over the years has engaged in mentoring of younger attorneys.

5.  The nominee has involved herself/himself in Bar activities, both on the local level and the State level, holding positions as an officer or chairing committees, etc.

6.  The nominee has been a voice on legal issues. 

7.  The nominee has throughout his/her career maintained the highest ethical standards.

Complete and submit the nomination form. Multiple nominations for the same individual are welcome, as are endorsements by local county bar associations.

Nomination deadline: October 18, 2019

Completed nomination form and supporting materials should be sent to:

Peter Coffey, Esq.
Professionalism Award Chair
224 State Street 
Schenectady, New York 12305


2000 – Eugene Morris
– James M. Pedowitz
– Bernard Rifkin
– John E. Blyth
– Harold A. Lubell
– John Hall
– Prof. Robert Zinman
– Mel Mitzner
– Lorraine Power Tharp (posthumous
-  Bill Colavito
– Joshua Stein
– Karl Holtzschue
 – no award presented
– Michael J. Berey
2015 - Peter V. Coffey

Andy Herz Rotating Slider
2016 - Andrew L. Herz

Real Property Law Section Professionalism Award 1
- Anne Reynolds Copps

2018 - Richard S. Fries

AM19 Awards Slider
2019 - Francis X. Carroll

The Real Property Law Section is now accepting applications for its two law student scholarships in the amount of $5,000 each. The scholarships will be awarded in January, 2020 at the NYSBA Annual Meeting.


Through a gift from the Real Property Law Section, The New York Bar Foundation established the Real Property Law Section Lorraine Power Tharp Scholarship in 2008. The $ 5,000 scholarship is awarded to a second- or third-year law school student who best exemplifies the core values important to Lorraine: academic excellence, a demonstrated interest in public service, high integrity and, if possible, an interest in real property law.

The Scholarship was created to honor the memory of Lorraine Power Tharp, who served as President of the NYSBA and Chair of the Real Property Law Section. 

Efforts will be made to honor Lorraine's commitment to gender equity and diversity in the profession. To ensure geographic diversity, the Foundation will strive to select students attending New York State law schools in different counties each year, so that over time students from all areas of the state will be able to benefit from the scholarship. A preference will be given to students who demonstrate financial  need.

The Real Property Law Section Lorraine Power Tharp Scholarship application form has details on eligibility, requirements and the deadline (TBA).


2008 – Rufus Williams - SUNY Buffalo
– no scholarship awarded
– Christopher R. Copeland - CUNY
– Milana Khlebina - St. John's
– Alissa Fortuna - SUNY Buffalo
– Leanne Monique Welds - Brooklyn Law School
 - no scholarship awarded
2015 - no scholarship awarded
Dave Ullman Rotating Slider
- David Ullman - Columbia Law School

2017 Tharp Recipient
2017 - Megan McGuiggan - University at Buffalo

Real Property Scholarship Winner 2018

2018 - Lauren Richardson - New York University School of Law

- Nicholaus Mills - Cornell Law School


Through a gift from the Real Property Law Section and Rosalyn Mitzner, The New York Bar Foundation established the Real Property Law Section Melvyn Mitzner Scholarship in 2013. The $ 5,000 scholarship is awarded to a full- or part-time student enrolled in a New York State law school. 

The scholarship was created to honor the memory of Melvyn Mitzner, a legend in the New York real estate legal community. Mitzner is a former chair of the Real Property Law Section, and was an active and valued member of the Section for many years. 

Efforts will be made to honor Mitzner’s commitment to professional achievement and to diversity in the profession.  To ensure geographic diversity, the Foundation will strive to select students attending New York State law schools in different counties each year, so that over time students from all areas of the State will be able to benefit from the scholarship. A preference will be given to students who demonstrate financial need.

The Real Property Law Section Melvyn Mitzner Scholarship application form has details on eligibility, requirements and the deadline. (TBA)


2013 - Edward Hyde Clarke - Albany Law School
 - no scholarship awarded
2015 - no scholarship awarded

Zapp Rotating Slider
- Nicholas Zapp - Albany Law School 

Real Property Law Section Professionalism Award 2
- Joanna Sedlak - Fordham University School of Law

- Marissa MacAneney - St. John's University School of Law

- Adebare Ogunleye - Albany Law School