Mackenzie Hughes won a leading, closely followed case on behalf of a national insurance company at the Court of Appeals, the highest court in
the state of New York, which defined the limits on the liability of a renter
of an automobile under the New York State General Business Law.
Mackenzie Hughes attorneys servicing the Appellate Practice area
Ryan T. Emery
W. Bradley Hunt
While some firms may shy away from handling difficult appellate cases,
we relish the challenge and the opportunity to prevail for our clients.
Over the years our appellate attorneys have included some of the most
highly regarded jurists in New York State, including a former chief judge
of the New York Court of Appeals, a former presiding justice of the Appellate
Division, Fourth Department, and other attorneys who have gone on from
Mackenzie Hughes to become respected judges of the New York State Supreme
Court and United States Federal District Court.
The present members of our Appellate Practice Group, two of whom have
come from judicial clerkships, have over fifty years combined experience
handling complex legal issues in commercial litigation, insurance coverage,
municipal and land use law, certiorari and condemnation, taxation, labor
and employment, civil rights, medical and legal malpractice, personal
injury, premises liability, and other areas of the law before state and
federal appellate courts.
Our appellate attorneys have handled major appeals that have helped to
define and shape New York civil law, including contractor liability under
Labor Law 240 (Narducci v. Manhasset Bay Associates, 96 N.Y.2d
259); the limitation of property damage liability a car rental company
can impose on the renter of a vehicle (Master Cars, Inc. v. Walters,
95 N.Y.2d 395); requirements for the exercise of long-arm personal jurisdiction
(Talbot v. Johnson Newspaper Corporation, 71 N.Y.2d 827); the
admissibility of expert opinion (Sawyer v. Dreis & Krump Manufacturing
Co., 67 N.Y.2d 328); the grant of a real property tax exemption for
municipal airport (City of Syracuse v. Comerford, 13 A.D.3d 1109);
and sustaining a town's authority to impose permit, legal, and engineering
fees on developers of subdivision plots (Home Builders Assoc. of Central
New York, Inc. v. Town of Onondaga, 267 A.D.2d 973). In the area
of criminal law, one member of our appellate group succeeded in obtaining
the reversal of a criminal conviction and sentence of over thirty years
in prison by convincing the United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit
to recognize a new kind of "structural error" that required reversal even
without a showing of prejudice (United States v. Harbin, 250
Recognizing our expertise in handling complex legal issues before state,
federal, and administrative appellate tribunals, businesses retain us
as special appellate counsel to provide a fresh look at their cases. We
also provide support to municipalities, municipal counsel, and other attorneys
by handling their appeals, advising them on particular matters, or undertaking
research, briefing, or argument of specific issues.
In addition, we represent interested parties as an amicus curiae or "friend
of the court," appearing in appeals involving cases or legal issues that
affect their industries, businesses, professions, or personal interests.