Attorneys Profiles

David B. Hamm

Position: Member

Address: Herzfeld & Rubin, P.C.
125 Broad Street, New York, NY, 10004

Phone: (212) 471-8542

Fax: (212) 344-3333

E-mail: DHamm@herzfeld-rubin.com

For more than 25 years, David Hamm served the dual roles at H&R of head of the Appellate Practice Group and lead attorney in the Insurance Coverage Analysis and Litigation Group, and although leadership of the Appellate Practice Group now rests in the capable hands of his long-time colleague Miriam Skolnik, David’s continuing participation as a member of the appellate group, in addition to his leadership in Insurance Coverage, is a great boon to the firm’s clients.

During his tenure with H&R (after a two-year clerkship at the New York State Court of Appeals), David has worked on more than 450 appeals in every appellate court in the State. He has many times been requested by clients to write Amicus Curiae briefs for the United States Supreme Court, the New York Court of Appeals and other appellate courts. Together with the other members of H&R’s appellate team, David has often spearheaded presentation of cutting-edge legal analysis resulting in appellate rulings not only favorable to our client in the case at bar, but which created precedent favorable to the client on a broader basis. His innovative approach to appellate practice resulted in such Court of Appeals decisions as in Sung Hwan Co. Ltd. v. Rite Aid Corp., 7  N.Y.3d 78 (2006), in which the Court reversed an Appellate Division and found a jurisdictional basis to permit enforcement of a Korean Court’s Judgment in New York, and Frank v. Meadowlakes Dev. Corp., 6 N.Y.3d 687 (2006), in which the Court overturned two intermediate appellate court determinations in interpreting Article 16 of New York’s Civil Practice Law and Rules in a manner most favorable to our client. A list of other appellate victories by H&R’s appellate team under David’s leadership can be accessed here.

David’s legal acumen is put to broader use than preparation and review of appellate briefs alone. His advice and legal analysis is much sought-after by colleagues and clients. He has often advised clients not to pursue an appeal, or to resolve an action on appeal, where his analysis suggested that to be in the client’s best interest. Like other members of the Appellate Practice Group, he directly interacts with H&R’s litigation attorneys on matters involving legal analysis and research, such as motions for summary judgment or trial memoranda of law, to assure the best possible result in the trial court or, if a favorable result cannot be obtained there, to preserve critical issues for appellate review.

As lead counsel in the Insurance Coverage area, David over the years has been entrusted by clients with defense of hundreds of millions of dollars in claims under liability policies, including policies alleged to cover mass tort claims such as those arising from asbestos, breast implants, heart valves and lead. His pace-setting arguments have led to such ground-breaking decisions as Jefferson Ins. Co. v. Travelers Indem. Co., 92 N.Y.2d 553; North Star Reinsurance Corp. v. Continental Ins. Co., 82 N.Y,2d 281; In re Consolidated Mut. Ins. Co., 60 N.Y.2d 1; and Lac D’Amiante du Quebec, Ltee (ASARCO) v. Superintendent of Ins. (In re Midland Ins. Co.), 269 A.D,2d 50. His expertise in insurance matters encompasses such related areas as insurance liquidation, insurance security funds, interpretation of workers’ compensation laws, application of New York’s "no-fault" statute’s "serious injury" criterion, subrogation and "antisubrogation," additional insured controversies and insurance ramifications of contractual indemnification provisions.

David has lectured and written widely on, among other things, appellate practice and insurance-related issues. His lectures include:

  • College of Insurance, Sponsored by New York City Housing Authority,
    Current Issues in Lack-of-Security Cases, 8/28/98
    Current Issues in Appellate Matters, 10/02/98
  • New York State Bar Association, Insurance Coverage Issues
    With a Focus on Personal Lines, 9/6/98
  • Office of Court Administration, 1998 Legal Update for Court Attorneys,
    Third-Party Actions in Labor Law Contexts, 11/17/98
  • Herzfeld & Rubin, P.C., Insurance Coverage Issues, 6/9/99
  • Brooklyn Bar Association, Labor Law: Construction Accident Cases &Third-Party Practice in Labor Law Actions, 11/9/99
  • Herzfeld & Rubin, P.C., Third Party Actions in Labor Law Personal Injury Cases, 6/7/00
  • New York State Trial Lawyers Institute; Update 2000, Insurance Law, 9/15/00
  • New York State Judicial Conference, Products Liability, July 11 & 17, 2001
  • Herzfeld & Rubin, P.C., New York State Appellate Practice for Litigators, 10/23/02
  • NY App Div, 1st & 2nd Dept. Clerks, Insurance Law §5102(d), 6/20/03
  • Herzfeld & Rubin, P.C. (at New York City Housing Auth.), Update on
  • New York State Appellate Practice for Litigators, 1/7/04
  • Herzfeld & Rubin, P.C., New York State Appellate Practice for Civil Litigators, 6/22/04
  • Defense Association of New York, New York State Appellate Practice: What Every Trial Attorney Should Know, 4/3/08
  • Herzfeld & Rubin, P.C., Appellate Practice: An Introduction, 7/22/08
  • Herzfeld & Rubin, P.C., Update on Appellate Practice 2013, 7/9/13

David’s publications (aside from those distributed at his lectures) include:

  • "Discovery in Product Liability Actions -- A Defendant’s Perspective",
    Practicing Law Institute, 1985
  • "Discovery in Defense of Product Liability Actions", Practicing Law Institute, 1986
  • "New York’s Tort Law: Whither the Wachtler Court?", New York Law Journal, p. 1, 9/19/89
  • "A Referee’s Rejection of Keene: Is it a ’Blip’ on the Screen, or Has the Counter-Revolution Begun?," TIPS Newsletter,
    Products, General Liability and Consumer Law Section, ABA, Spring, 1993
  • "Insurance Law: Cases Show Limited Value of Precedent", New York Law Journal, p. 58, 11/1/93
  • "Insurance Law: Nuances Bedevil Antisubrogation", New York Law Journal, 1/12/98
  • "Real Estate Update: After ’Inchaustegui’", New York Law Journal, 8/29/01
  • Practice Insights, LEXIS-New York CLS (2004-2014):
    CPLR 214-c          CPLR 3216         CPLR 5513
    CPLR 1003           CPLR 4110-b     CPLR 5515
    CPLR 2103           CPLR 5501         CPLR 5519
    CPLR 2221           CPLR 5511         CPLR 5701
  • Outside Counsel, "Why Veto Bill to Amend CPLR 3001, Add Ins. Law 3451?,"
    New York Law Journal, p. 5, 1 t/16/07
  • Outside Counsel, "CPLR 3101(d): Myth of the ’Missing’ Time Limit," New York Law Journal, p. 5, 11/29/07

In addition, dozens of his letters to the editor have been published by the New York Law Journal and other law-related publications

David is admitted to the State and Federal courts of New York, the Second and Third Circuit Courts of Appeals and the United States Supreme Court. He is rated AV by Martindale-Hubbell, has for more than 20 years been listed in Marquis’ Who’s Who publications (most recently, in Who’s Who in the World, among others), and enjoys membership in numerous bar associations. As a Iong-time member of the New York State Bar Association’s Committee on the Civil Practice Law and Rules, David has assisted in the drafting of legislation and his analyses and recommendations on behalf of the Committee concerning bills introduced into New York’s Legislature grace, the "bill jackets" of dozens of New York s statutes. Married to his wife of forty-three years, the father of two and grandfather of nine (so far), David resides in Brooklyn, New York, where he regularly assists local charitable organizations.

125 Broad Street, New York, New York, 10004 - Phone: 212-471-8500 - Fax: 212-344-3333
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