Practice Areas

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Litigation can be costly, time-consuming, and unpredictable. Depending on your circumstances, alternative dispute resolution may be an advisable alternative to litigation. Arbitration and mediation allow parties to keep costs at a minimum, and they often allow parties to have their disputes resolved more quickly than typical litigation.

Appeals and Motions

The Sugarman Law Firm’s litigation and transactional practices are supported by the Appeals and Motions Practice Group. The Appeals and Motions Practice Group focuses on appellate practice and complex motion practice, and its attorneys specialize in legal research, legal writing, and oral advocacy.

Architects, Engineers, and Surveyors

The Sugarman Law Firm has the industry-specific knowledge, experience, and expertise that design professionals can trust to handle all their legal needs. We understand the unique risks design professionals face, and we can help minimize and manage them.

Business Planning and Litigation

With a diversity of experience representing business clients within both the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors, our attorneys provide a full range of legal services for our clients’ corporate and business needs.

Criminal Defense

Sugarman Law Firm is well positioned to serve individuals facing violation, misdemeanor, or felony criminal charges. Our criminal law department is made up of former prosecutors who have a critical understanding of how the district attorney's office operates and how criminal cases are put together by the police and the prosecution.

Family Law and Divorce

Our attorneys handle separation, divorce, custody and support issues, adoption and related family law matters. We start by listening to be sure we fully understand your particular circumstances so that we can develop a plan of action that best fits your needs.

General and Auto Liability Defense

For more than a century, Sugarman Law Firm has represented literally thousands of insureds and remains one of the oldest and largest insurance defense practices in Central New York.

Insurance Coverage Disputes and Litigation

The attorneys at the Sugarman Law Firm have represented both insurers and insureds in insurance coverage disputes and litigation. We provide coverage opinion letters to insurers, and prosecute and defend declaratory judgment actions.

Labor and Employment Law

The attorneys in the Sugarman Law Firm’s Labor and Employment Law Practice Group represent both small and large employers with a wide variety of employment related issues. We handle all types of employment litigation, as well as employment negotiations.

Medical Professional Liability Defense

At the Sugarman Law Firm, we value our relationships with the physicians, nurses, chiropractors, and hospital administrators in Central New York. Because we value those relationships, we do not sue any treatment provider for medical malpractice, and we focus exclusively on defending physicians, hospitals, medical groups, and nursing homes.

Municipal and Governmental Defense

Because of their years of experience, the attorneys at the Sugarman Law Firm are familiar with the particular legal principles and procedural rules that apply to municipal subdivisions and authorities.

Personal Injury Claims

When someone is harmed, injured, or killed through the negligence of another, the Sugarman Law Firm offers aggressive and personal representation, regardless of the size of the claim.

Products Liability Claims

Our attorneys have the experience necessary to handle the complex issues that arise when accidents involving claims of defective design or manufacture of a product are made. The Sugarman Law Firm is read to provide representation at all stages of the process including initial analysis and investigation, identification of experts, discovery, negotiation and, when necessary, trial.

Professional Liability Defense

We have extensive experience defending malpractice claims. Our attorneys have the specific knowledge and experience necessary to handle the issues professionals face. We understand your practice and can help you recognize and manage the risks it presents. We represent architects and engineers, physicians, nurses and hospitals, as well as attorneys, accountants, insurance professionals and real estate professionals.

Real Estate Transactions and Litigation

Whether you are buying your first home or developing a multi-million dollar real estate project, the Sugarman Law Firm’s attorneys cans provide the legal representation you need. We represent real estate developers, buyers and sellers of homes, landlords and tenants, and homeowner’s associations, condominiums, and co-ops in a variety of situations.

Toxic Tort Claims

The Sugarman Law Firm has successfully defended a wide array of toxic tort claims involving lead-based paint, asbestos products, mold, toxic spills and leakages, and industrial chemicals and solvents, including benzene.

Trusts, Estates, and Elder Law

A primary focus of the Sugarman Law Firm’s Trusts and Estates Practice Group is to help our clients achieve their estate planning goals and prepare the legal documents required to implement their objectives. We prepare wills, medical advance directives such as health care proxies and living wills, powers of attorney, shareholder agreements, prenuptial agreements, and both testamentary and living trusts.

General, Trucking, and Auto Liability Defense


For more than a century, Sugarman Law Firm has represented literally thousands of insureds and remains one of the oldest and largest insurance defense practices in Central New York. We defend insureds in a variety of types of matters including automobile accidents (including motor vehicle, motorcycle, and trucking accidents), premises liability cases, and work place accidents (including construction site accidents and claims pursuant to New York’s “Labor Law”), medical, architectural and engineering malpractice claims, claims against municipalities and school districts, and a variety of other matters. We also represent insurers in coverage disputes and prosecute subrogation claims.

Effective, efficient, and economically-sound litigation management is only possible when claims professionals, defense counsel, and insureds work together, communicate regularly, apply common sense, and make sound business decisions. Claims professionals, like attorneys, face constant deadlines and have to make timely well-reasoned decisions on a daily basis. Joint decision making at every step of the litigation process, thorough preparation, reporting and file documentation, and substantive timely case evaluations are the keys to successful verdicts, settlements, and arbitration awards. The right result requires the right defense counsel.

The Sugarman Law Firm’s litigation attorneys represent and regularly defend counties, towns, and villages across New York; Fortune 500 clients, including manufacturing and delivery companies; professionals, including accountants, attorneys, physicians, engineers, and architects; contractors and construction companies; food service businesses including bars, taverns, and restaurants; trucking and hauling companies; insurance carriers; residential homeowners, automobile owners, and small businesses; school districts; and colleges and universities.

Every litigation attorney at the Sugarman Law Firm is first and foremost a trial attorney. Although they have developed selected areas of expertise, all of these attorneys began practicing in general liability litigation, and each has continued to develop skills and expertise in this broad practice area. As a result, we have extensive experience and are well-versed in all types of liability claims.

Premises Liability Cases

Whether one operates a business or owns a home, there are many occurrences that create liability concerns related to the ownership of property. As a business owner or property owner, one can expect someone to claim that your property is not reasonably safe. Potential claims include a dangerous condition causing injury, or illegal sales or activities likely related to alcohol, or the use of recreational equipment. The Sugarman Law Firm has been involved in cases across the state that have set legal standards for homeowners and business owners to follow when claims are made. Representative cases have included the sale of alcohol, serving alcohol to minors, and the use of recreational equipment, and claims of poor maintenance of property.

Motor Vehicle Accident Cases

The use and/or operation of an automobile can result in injuries or create liability concerns and personal liability exposure. The Sugarman Law Firm addresses motor vehicle cases by evaluating the liability of the accident itself, and obtaining an early understanding of how or why the accident happened. Also a review of issues related to the alleged injury and whether it relates to the occurrence or a result of another accident or cause. These issues are developed by our strategic use of accident reconstructionists, experienced analysis of policy investigations, and medical and vocational experts that we consult with on a regular basis. The Sugarman Law Firm has represented individuals and insurance carriers regarding simple property damage claims to serious injuries with large economic loss claims.

Traumatic Brain Injury Claims

Often a person claims they sustained a traumatic brain injury as a result of some occurrence. The traumatic brain injury claim requires one to draw on many fields of experts. The Sugarman Law Firm works with many specialists to learn all that we can regarding such a claim and whether such an injury has been sustained. This requires a thorough analysis of the claim and experience to draw on specific specialties in order to determine if there are other causes that can account for the claims being made. We have successfully defended claims of cognitive loss of function with skilled research and specialists to ensure a proper analysis of the injury and the liability raised.

Trucking and Transportation Claims

The transportation industry demands an attorney staff that is familiar with federal and state regulations impacting the transportation industry. The rapid response of our transportation team to trucking accidents is an essential reason for the success of our firm handling these matters. Our staff is trained to investigate, evaluate, and prepare claims that arise out of tractor trailer accidents in an expedited fashion. The experienced staff works with local, and over-the-road companies with their transportation related claims.

Wrongful Death Claims

The loss of life in an accident gives rise to many unique issues in New York State. The wrongful death statute in New York is unique. The staff is trained to address not only the cause of the accident but the damages special to a wrongful death claim. These elements require an aggressive evaluation, and the use of specialized experts to assess the merits of each claim. The Sugarman Law Firm has addressed many wrongful death claims over the years under various circumstances and had successful results for those involved either at the trial level or the appellate level in New York’s courts.