Shmueli
v.
NRT N.Y

Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New York, First DepartmentDec 8, 2009
888 N.Y.S.2d 886 (N.Y. App. Div. 2009)
888 N.Y.S.2d 88668 A.D.3d 4792009 N.Y. Slip Op. 9073

No. 1680.

December 8, 2009.

Judgment, Supreme Court, New York County (Michael Stallman, J., and a jury), entered January 5, 2007, awarding plaintiff compensatory damages of $400,000 plus prejudgment interest, and punitive damages of $1,200,000 plus postverdict interest, unanimously modified, on the law, to vacate the award of punitive damages, and otherwise affirmed, without costs.

Bragar Wexler Eagel Squire, PC, New York (Lawrence P. Eagel of counsel), for appellant.

Sarit Shmueli, respondent pro se.

Before: Tom, J.P., Nardelli, Renwick, Freedman and Roman, JJ.


The award of compensatory damages is supported by the weight of the evidence showing that when defendant, a real estate brokerage firm, terminated its association with plaintiff, a real estate broker, defendant converted plaintiffs customer list and other information that she had stored on the computer that defendant had provided to her, and that plaintiffs resulting loss of commissions amounted to $400,000. We vacate the award of punitive damages because defendant's practice of precluding a terminated employee from having access to its computer system does not evince a high degree of moral turpitude ( see Ross v Louise Wise Servs., Inc., 8 NY3d 478, 489).