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Sahn Ward Braff Koblenz Coschignano, PLLC


In addition to being a Partner with the Firm, Chris J. Coschignano served as Councilman in the Town of Oyster Bay. After more than 25 years in public service, Chris has decided to move on to a new chapter in his professional career. He will continue to be involved in community service and will continue with his full-fledged efforts with the Firm.

"All of us at the Firm congratulate Chris on his distinguished career in public service and elected office," said Michael H. Sahn, the Firm’s Managing Partner. "Chris has been a role model in his service to the public and the legal profession. We are fortunate that our partner will continue his work with us, both as a lawyer and as a leader in our community."

In this interview, Chris shares his experience in public office, his involvement in the community and the work he continues to perform with the Firm.

When did you decide to leave public office?
I was in a fourth term and a fifth term was not in my plans. Having a young family meant that I needed to spend more time with them while they are growing up. As much as I enjoyed serving the people of Oyster Bay, I came to realize that it was no longer possible for me to dedicate the time and effort that was required to do this job the way that I had done it, that it was my family that needed my full attention.


New York City Land Use & Development Update

Special Permits May Be Required for Self-Storage Facilities in Industrial Business Zones

The Department of City Planning has proposed an amendment to the New York City Zoning Resolution that would require a new special permit for self-storage facilities primarily within manufacturing zoning districts in the City’s Industrial Business Zones (IBZs).



Adam H. Koblenz Named to CMF's Board of Trustees

Adam H. Koblenz, a Member and Partner with the Firm, has been named to the Children's Medical Fund of New York's (CMF) Board of Trustees. Mr. Koblenz has been actively involved in the organization, previously serving as vice president of the men's division for several years.

More recently, Mr. Koblenz and his wife Bess were proud to play a small role in helping to open a new diagnostic wing at the Cohen Children's Medical Center through volunteering and fundraising efforts. The Children's Medical Fund Center for Diagnostic Studies, located on the fourth floor, features two advanced 3D magnetic resonance imaging machines specifically geared to children. To help alleviate any fears the children may have, the room also has a mock scanner and is decorated in an outer space motif. Children are provided with special goggles so they can watch movies during the examination.

State Bar News Announces John Christopher's New Position as YLS Chair

John Christopher, a Partner with the Firm, has been named chair of the Young Lawyers Section. This was reported by State Bar News. Mr. Christopher also serves as a section delegate to the House of Delegates and liaison to the Real Property Law Section. In January, he was named a fellow to the New York Bar Foundation.

Click here to read the article.

Adam H. Koblenz Leads the Firm's Representation as Pro Bono Counsel to Nassau County SPCA

The Nassau County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) has appointed Sahn Ward Braff Koblenz Coschignano, PLLC as pro bono counsel. The Nassau County SPCA is dedicated to the rescue, care and placement of animals that have been displaced or harmed. The nonprofit group is designed to protect animals in the county from abuse and neglect. The Firm is proud to support this terrific organization in its efforts to better serve the community at large.

Sahn Ward Braff Koblenz Coschignano Receives Long Island Business News' Corporate Citizenship Award

The Firm received the Long Island Business News Corporate Citizenship Award at a special ceremony held on June 6 at Crest Hollow Country Club in Woodbury. The Firm was honored in the category of Leadership Excellence for outstanding contributions and leadership in the community.

The Corporate Citizenship Awards recognize companies and individuals who believe that, by being a good corporate citizen, we contribute to the economic and social well-being of our employees, businesses and the community. Honorees consistently prove that true community stewardship evolves through building strong partnerships with nonprofit organizations and others that strive to meet the critical needs of our community.

Firm Welcomes Two Summer Associates

This summer, two law students will be working with the Firm's attorneys on a wide range of matters, helping them to gain insight and practical experience working in a law firm setting. Joseph D. Brees is a 2015 graduate of Binghamton University, where he graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in History & Philosophy. He is entering his third year at the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law. Robert A. Veintimilla graduated summa cum laude from SUNY-Farmingdale State College School of Engineering in 2015 with a Bachelor of Science. He is currently entering his second year at the Maurice A. Deane School of Law at Hofstra University.

matters of interest

Firm Seeks Rezoning and Variances for Construction of Apartments on Site of Former Medical Center

Michael Sahn, the Firm's Managing Partner, along with Firm Partners Chris Coschignano and Dan Braff and Firm Associate Nick Cappadora, are representing the developer Engel Burman of Uniondale before the Town of Hempstead. The Firm's client is seeking zoning changes on two parcels of land on the former A. Holly Patterson Extended Care Facility campus in Uniondale to construct 388 rental units.

The developer plans to construct two three-story buildings on the hospital property, one zoned as high-density residential and the other zoned as age-restricted (55 years of age and older). Mr. Cappadora assisted Mr. Sahn in the presentation before the Town Board. Mr. Coschignano handled the zoning matters for the developer and Mr. Braff negotiated the terms of the lease with the hospital.

Appellate Court Issues Decision of First Impression Under the New York Franchised Motor Vehicle Act

Jon A. Ward, Andrew M. Roth and Joseph R. Bjarnson, Partners with the Firm, successfully represented the Biener Auto Group (Biener), an Audi dealer located in Great Neck, New York, before the New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Second Department, in a case of first impression under the New York Franchised Motor Vehicle Dealer Act (the Dealer Act).


Country Club, Fast Food Franchise Retain Firm in Separate Development Matters

Christian Browne, a Partner with the Firm, was retained as counsel by the new operator of the Woodmere Country Club for its development rights on its existing golf course. A moratorium is currently in place to halt the development of a residential project on a parcel of approximately 50 acres. Once construction is permitted, the project is expected to be the largest residential development in Nassau County.

Mr. Browne also successfully represented a landowner and a Burger King franchisee before the Village of Freeport Site Plan Review Board in obtaining approval of a site plan to build the restaurant on a vacant commercial property on the corner of Henry Street and Merrick Road.

Firm Represents Clients in Several Multimillion-Dollar Transactions

Firm Partner Wayne G. Edwards represented a purchaser of a property in a $2 million transaction. The contract closed within six weeks. He also represented a seller in the $2.8 million sale of a building in Woodmere. In addition, Mr. Edwards represented a developer in a $5 million sale of vacant land in Old Brookville for residential development and negotiated construction agreements with the purchasers of the property on two of the remaining lots. He is currently working on a $6 million refinancing of a commercial property in Springfield.

Firm Successfully Navigates Complex Commercial Real Estate Transaction for Engineering Company

Firm Partner Robert A. Abiuso and Associate Michael J. Barone, Jr. successfully represented an engineering firm that was seeking to purchase a commercial property in New Hyde Park. The property in question was wrought with many issues regarding zoning, certificate of occupancy, corporate formation and taxes. Thanks to Mr. Barone’s efforts, he was able to identify and correct the underlying problems. Mr. Abiuso and Mr. Barone were also able to work with multiple outside attorneys and third parties on these issues, as well as provide financing for the purchase and satisfy the requirements of the Small Business Administration.


Coming Together Through the Law

By Joshua D. Brookstein, Esq.

The law brings people together. That’s why I dedicate my time to mentoring young people and coaching a mock trial team. Breaking down stereotypes, building self-confidence, and fostering a sense of community are essential elements in the development of the social-emotional intelligence of our youth. In today’s world, our young people are subject to the diminution of civil discourse and the ability to disagree respectfully. Unfortunately, the state of our discourse is increasingly filled with hyperpartisanship and the assignment of blame, more often than not based on preconceived notions rather than actual experiences in engaging with those with whom one disagrees. The sad reality is that, instead of coming together as Americans, we, too, are often planting seeds of divisiveness within our next generation of leaders when we should be unifying them through compassion, communication, and cooperation. High school mock trial programs, however, are one way to reverse this trend.



Elaine Colavito's "Bench Briefs" Appears In Suffolk Lawyer

Elaine Colavito had her "Bench Briefs" column published in the May 2017 edition of The Suffolk Lawyer. "Bench Briefs" is a roundup of recent decisions from Suffolk County trial courts.

To review these decisions, click here.


Estate Planning for Your Kids Impacts You More Than You Think

By Matthew E. Rappaport, Esq., LL.M.

In my experience, most people below the age of 40 put off estate planning because they believe their chances of dying in the near future are unrealistic. Delaying estate planning can have catastrophic consequences for these clients and their families if the unlikely does occur, but their parents typically underestimate the havoc that the death of a child or a child's spouse can wreak on their lives. While estate planning for young clients – even if they're single – will protect their spouses and children, many fail to realize exactly how much planning will also protect their parents.



Michael H. Sahn to Moderate at “Future of Long Island Commercial Real Estate” Summit

Michael H. Sahn, the Firm's Managing Partner, will be one of the moderators at the 2017 "Future of Long Island Commercial Real Estate" summit, which will take place on June 8 from 8 a.m. to noon at the Holiday Inn-Plainview Long Island. Mr. Sahn will moderate a panel of real estate professionals who will discuss such topics as finance, capital investments and 1031 exchanges.

Sahn Ward Braff Koblenz Coschignano, PLLC is also one of the event's sponsors. The event is being presented by the New York Real Estate Journal and American Investment Properties.

For more information about the conference, click here.


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