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Thomas Swartz
Thomas Swartz, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 2815
Experience:  Twenty one years experience as a lawyer in New York and New Jersey. Former Appellate Law Clerk.
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Recently, I withdrew and Article 78 petition against the local

Customer Question

Recently, I withdrew and Article 78 petition against the local town board. I agreed to discontinue my actions 'with prejudice'.

Also, I withdrew my counter suit against the developer who was suing me for interfering with his business.

The goal I was trying to accomplish was to prevent the town board from allowing a development to be constructed by a) changing the zoning b) transferring the development rights to another property c) using open space money to buy property from a religious organization

Can I continue to work to defeat the town board's decision without violating the agreement that I signed withdrawing my lawsuit?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Thomas Swartz replied 1 year ago.
HelloCustomer

Yes, but you can not do so through the legal or judicial process. The dismissal of your lawsuit with prejudice means that you can not commence another lawsuit on the same claims. Thus, you can not attack the legality of the town board's decision in the courts. But you are free to use the political process to argue against the town board's decision. What do I mean by the political process. Well, you can appear at town board hearings and try to convince them to change their minds. You can circulate petitions and present them to the town board, you can write letters to the editor of your local paper, you can run for the town board yourself etc. These would all be acceptable. You just can't commence another lawsuit trying to stop the decision.

Thomas
Thomas Swartz, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 2815
Experience: Twenty one years experience as a lawyer in New York and New Jersey. Former Appellate Law Clerk.
Thomas Swartz and 6 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Is it possible to reinstate the lawsuits? I've reconsidered but don't know if I passed some sort of statute of limitations.

Is there a procedure in New York to reinstate?
Expert:  Thomas Swartz replied 1 year ago.
It would be very difficult to reinstate the lawsuit. You would have to make a motion to the court to reinstate. But since you voluntarily agreed to withdraw the cases with prejudice, it is very unlikely that the court would grant the motion. The only thing I can think that would cause the court to ever consider the motion would be if the other parties committed some type of fraud which caused you to withdraw the cases.

Thomas
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Could I then sue another agency in the town? The article 78 I filed was against the town board

Other agencies need to sign off on this project as well.
Expert:  Thomas Swartz replied 1 year ago.
Yes, you could sue another agency. Your withdrawal would only apply to the defendants in those lawsuits.

However, if you were to sue another agency, you may run into a statute of limitations problem. The statute of limitations to challenge a decision by a town agency is 4 months from the date of the agency's decision (CPLR 217). So that is likely going to be a problem for you.

Thomas

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