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News - 2022

May. 2022

Joseph Cacace offers insight into recent choice-of-law ruling in MA Business Litigation Session

Joseph M. Cacace is quoted in a Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly article on a court decision that a New York resident could sue an insurance carrier under the Massachusetts consumer protection statute.

The New York resident’s lawsuit challenges the carrier’s calculation of his long-term disability benefits.  

The insurance company countered that he could not pursue remedies under Massachusetts consumer protection laws because New York law governs his claims instead.  New York consumer protection laws do not provide the same remedies afforded under Massachusetts law.

A Massachusetts Superior Court Business Litigation Session judge disagreed with the carrier, ruling that the plaintiff’s claims of unfair business practices were more akin to a tort claim involving fraud and misrepresentations rather than breach of contract.  The judge found that the plaintiff's case involves allegations of wrongdoing by the insurance company’s Massachusetts employees. 

Mr. Cacace, a partner at the firm, said the case illustrates the importance of including express choice-of-law provisions in contracts.

“If you want predictability in terms of what state law is going to apply, you want to make sure you use choice-of-law clauses in your contracts,” he told the publication.  “And you want to make sure that you draft them broadly to include not just breach-of-contract claims but all claims arising out of the contractual relationship, including tort claims.”

Mr. Cacace handles civil disputes and appeals of all types, including complex business litigation matters.