The Cuddy & Feder litigation team of Joshua Grauer, Jordan Brooks, and Troy Lipp recently won a $2.8 million arbitration award on behalf of their client, the owner of a multi-level shopping center located in downtown Nyack, New York, against the Village of Nyack due to flood damage to the shopping center following a June 23, 2011 rainstorm.
In the arbitration proceedings, Cuddy & Feder successfully argued and established that the Village of Nyack was liable for the flood damage to their client’s commercial property because of the Village’s failure to maintain and repair its storm water drainage system which overflowed because of the June 23, 2011 storm.
While the Village had argued that the rainstorm was an “Act of God” and therefore the Village was not legally responsible for any property damage resulting from that storm, Cuddy & Feder presented historical evidence – including minutes from Village Board meetings dating back to the early 20th century – to the arbitrator demonstrating that the flooding issues in Nyack’s downtown area where the shopping center is located were well-recognized for decades by Village officials. Cuddy & Feder also successfully defeated the Village’s argument that private property owners were responsible for maintaining those portions of the Village’s storm water drainage system which run on private property.
The Village argued that Cuddy & Feder’s client’s damages should be limited to the repair costs estimated, for insurance purposes, by the Village’s public adjuster, who was not a contractor. In rebuttal, Cuddy & Feder presented expert testimony from a reputable contractor with vast experience in the Village and with the shopping center, which testimony established the true cost of restoring the shopping center to its pre-flood condition. The arbitrator adopted Cuddy & Feder’s expert’s proffered measure of damages in their entirety.