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Patterson Belknap Hosts Conversation about Litigation Practice in New York Courts with Court of Appeals Judge Michael Garcia and New York Practice author Professor Patrick M. Connors

On Wednesday, June 20, 2018, Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP welcomed Associate Judge Michael Garcia of the New York Court of Appeals, and Professor Patrick M. Connors, author of the New York Practice treatise, for a continuing legal education program on litigation practice in New York courts. Patterson Belknap partners Stephen P. Younger and Muhammad U. Faridi, authors of the New York Commercial Division Practice Guide, also participated with Mr. Younger moderating a discussion of New York practice issues and Mr. Faridi serving as a panelist.

During introductions, the panel honored the late Professor David D. Siegel, his mentorship, and his contributions to the panel members’ interest in New York civil procedure. Both Judge Garcia and Prof. Connors shared insights about having served as Prof. Siegel’s research assistants. The late Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals, Judith S. Kaye, also was honored in introductory remarks for her lasting impact on New York jurisprudence and practice.

The panel discussed a wide range of procedural issues that affect New York practice, among them: the policies behind and the continued importance of New York’s unique civil procedure code, the New York Civil Practice Law and Rules (“CPLR”); the potential impacts for practitioners of failing to adhere to controlling procedural rules; how best to navigate the multiple sets of rules affecting New York practice, including the CPLR, court rules and individual judges’ rules; the purpose and effect of the ever-evolving Commercial Division Rules; potential opportunities for procedural simplification; and current procedural issues arising in the courts in the digital age. The panel concluded by emphasizing the responsibility of the bench and bar alike to promote greater opportunities for junior lawyers, and particularly women and persons of color, to take speaking roles in the courtroom so as to pass on the great heritage of the New York court system to the next generation of New York practitioners. There followed an inter-active discussion with audience members about these issues.

Patterson Belknap thanks Judge Garcia and Professor Connors for joining the firm for an evening of lively and engaging discussion.