Christina Sonsire is heading to the classroom starting this week to update other lawyers about the latest civil damages determined in courts across New York state.

Christina will teach lawyers about the significant verdicts and court decisions in civil courts during the last year for the New York State Academy of Trial Lawyers, the state’s most comprehensive trial lawyers group. Christina has prepared and will teach a one-hour class called Damages in five upstate locations, including Ithaca, a new site this year.

Christina has taught other classes for the Academy, but this is the first time she has been invited to develop a class and teach in the Academy’s Annual Update, where lawyers can earn seven professional practice credit hours and one ethics credit hour in one all-day continuing legal education (CLE) training session in locations across the state. In New York state, lawyers are required to earn 24 CLE credit hours every two years.

Each training session will include other topics such as civil evidence, ethics, labor law, medical malpractice, and product liability.

Christina, a dean with the Academy, teaches her first Damages sessions from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, Oct. 4, in Albany, and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 5, in Syracuse. She will also teach on Oct. 18 in Rochester and Oct. 19 in Buffalo.

On Nov. 1, she will teach and be the program manager at the new Ithaca session.

“I was honored to be asked by the Academy to prepare and teach Damages,” Christina said. “I hope to teach it annually because it will keep me up to date on what’s happening in courts across the state and that will greatly help my clients at Ziff Law in terms of determining a fair settlement value. I will know what the appropriate amount is to ask juries to award based on my research into other cases.”

The new Ithaca program will provide Southern Tier lawyers from Otsego County to Steuben County, as well as Northern Tier lawyers, a more accessible location for training. In the past, they have had to go to Syracuse, Albany, Rochester or Buffalo.

The Annual Update series began Sept. 20 on Long Island and Sept. 27 in New York City, and after the upstate swing, returns downstate on Oct. 25 in Westchester County before its final upstate session on Nov. 1 in Ithaca. The series concludes on Nov. 15 in Brooklyn.

Most of the Annual Update sessions draw 200 to 300 attorneys, Christina said, adding that interest has been very strong in the new Ithaca session.

“The Academy asked me to teach because I have been giving lectures for them for 10 years and they know my practice area spans a wide area of New York,” Christina said. “I have made a lot of great connections and I know what’s happening in many cases. I’m excited to have this opportunity.”

To contact Christina Sonsire: