Friday, October 12, 2012
Cuomo Signs New Law Allowing Attorneys To Put Liens On Settlement Proceeds
STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. -- A bill penned by Assemblyman Matthew Titone, that would allow lawyers to put liens on settlement proceeds obtained through dispute resolution, has been signed into law by Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
Said Titone (D-North Shore): "Allowing these liens not only gives attorneys greatly needed protection for the value of their legal services, but benefits the public as well because it encourages settlement and alternative dispute resolution ... While clients and the court system benefit from the increased use of alternative dispute resolution, as an attorney I recognized that lawyers were assuming a substantial risk in agreeing to perform legal services for clients absent the filing of litigation."
He noted that prior to the law, lawyers didn't have a way of getting paid if the dispute never reached court.
"Expanding the lien law to include alternative dispute resolution and out-of-court settlements will help avoid attorney fee disputes, and encourage the resolution of cases without having to burden an already overburdened court system," said Maria Cilenti, legislative director of the New York State Bar Association, praising the new law.