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Electrical Inspection Company Succeeds in Lawsuit Alleging Deceptive Claims Made by Competitor and Obtains Injunctive Relief and Attorney's Fees

Christian Browne, a Partner with the Firm, recently successfully represented an electrical inspection company, which sought — and was granted — injunctive relief and attorney’s fees against a rival inspection business that had posted false statements on websites, claiming the plaintiff was out of business.

The defendant, New York State Electrical Inspections, Inc. (NYSEII), used several websites under its control to promote the claim that the firm’s client, the New York Board of Fire Underwriters (NYBFU), was no longer performing electrical inspection services. While NYBFU had been dissolved around 2009, it was reconstituted in 2013 and resumed work as an electrical inspection company.

NYBFU, therefore, sued NYSEII under New York General Business Law §349, a section that prevents a business from disseminating false or misleading information that is likely to confuse or misdirect consumers.

On December 7, 2017, Justice Sharon Gianelli of the Nassau County Supreme Court ruled that, as a matter of law, the information on the NYSEII websites was untrue and could serve to mislead consumers in the market for electrical inspection services. The Court enjoined NYSEII from continuing to display false information about NYBFU on its websites and also awarded NYBFU attorney’s fees as authorized under the General Business Law.

Ralph Branciforte, a Partner with the Firm, and Associate Joshua D. Brookstein assisted Mr. Browne on the case.

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