Mixon v TBV, Inc., 2010 NY Slip Op 05521 (App. Div., 2nd, 2010)
The threshold issue raised by these facts is whether the limousine defendants are aggrieved by the dismissal of the complaint against the van defendants. The requirement that an appellant be aggrieved by a judgment or order appealed from is contained in CPLR 5511, which states:
"§ 5511. Permissible appellant and respondent. An aggrieved party or a person substituted for him may appeal from any appealable judgment or order except one entered upon the default of the aggrieved party. He shall be designated as the appellant and the adverse party as the respondent" (emphasis added).
When the revisers of the laws on civil practice were in the process of creating the CPLR, they were unable to formulate a definition for the word "aggrievement" and they determined to leave that definition to case law (see Revisers' Notes in McKinney's Cons Laws of NY, Book 7B, CPLR 5511, at 129). At that time, the classic attempt at a broad definition of aggrievement was found in the case of Matter of Richmond County Socy. for Prevention of Cruelty to Children (11 AD2d 236, affd 9 NY2d 913, cert denied sub nom. Staten Island Mental Health Soc., Inc. v Richmond County Soc. For Prevention of Cruelty to Children, 368 US 290), in which it was said that "the test [of aggrievement] is whether the person seeking to appeal has a direct interest in the controversy which is affected by the result and whether the adjudication has a binding force against the rights, person or property of the party or person seeking to appeal" (id. at 239). Experience with that definition has shown that while legally correct, it does not provide a clear test which is relatively easy to apply with consistency.
For an analysis of the decision, head over to Full Court Pass. I'm too busy winning awards and shit.