According to The Post, Garbuz is from New Rochelle. He works as an attorney in a small law firm. Garbuz and multiple of his family members make up a portion of the 11 cases of coronavirus now reported in New York State.
Garbuz’s law firm was founded in 2001. “When we started out with a handful of clients, by mere word of mouth we have grown to representing thousands of clients who look for intelligent hands-on competent counsel,” its website reads.
New York health officials didn’t release Garbuz’s name, identifying him only as a 50 year old man who had contracted coronavirus. However, they did release the name of the law firm. They’ve described his condition as everything from critical to serious.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. The Wife, Daughter & Son of Lawrence Garbuz All Tested Positive for Coronavirus
After Garbuz tested positive for coronavirus, his wife, 14-year-old daughter, and 20-year-old son all tested positive for the virus as well, according to The New York Post.
Lawrence Garbuz’s wife is named Adina Garbuz. The couple’s college-age son attends Yeshiva University’s Washington Heights branch, according to The Post.
Law.com describes Garbuz as a “Westchester County lawyer who works” at a Midtown Manhattan law firm. He was the second person in New York to come down with the virus. It’s a firm of six lawyers.
The New York Post reports that 1,000 people with connections to Garbuz and some of the others infected were asked to keep themselves quarantined.
On Facebook, Garbuz’s wife Adina Garbuz defines herself as “a mom of four, wife of one, hopefully friend to many and a partner at trusts and estates firm.” She wrote that she also works at Lewis and Garbuz P.C., studied at NYU, and went to Yeshiva University High School. Her top post on Facebook was a post about stopping anti-Semitism.
His wife wrote an emotional post on Facebook:
I am speaking to you wearing two hats- as wife of Lawrence Garbuz and as partner of our law firm, Lewis and Garbuz, P.C. We would have preferred this all remain private but since it is no longer, I wanted to at least share some truths and allay people’s fears. Other than Lawrence no one else in my family has been sick other than a slight cough.
When I was first informed of the positive result, I and my entire family immediately provided any and all information to several Departments of Health well into the wee hours of the night in hopes of letting this all be contained as quickly as possible for all of us. We all together pray and hope for the safety and good health of everyone. My family has continued to provide all information requested to best assist in curtailing this epidemic.
As for my husband, while he still remains critical, I and my family remain very hopeful of his full recovery. He is a tenacious person in all aspects of his life and I know he will come out of this strong. He is a very caring hardworking person who constantly cares for his clients and those around him over himself. I think it is from this that he was run down and susceptible to the illness he acquired. So, I ask all of us who are running on the hamster wheel of life, particularly us New Yorkers, to learn from this and take a moment to take care of yourself. We should use this an opportunity to re-calibrate and de-stress. Nothing can be more important than our health.
From a young child, all Lawrence has ever wanted to be was a lawyer that worked hands on helping people. He is a brilliant attorney who is particularly sensitive to his clients but whose expertise is coming up with creative solutions to trusts and estates issues such as planning for those with disabilities, family disputes, tax issues and the like. He is admired by many judges for the same reason. He is a mentor to many in his field and spends much of his day answering colleagues’ questions. Yet, he is a very humble person who never touts his many successes in his professional world. You would never hear this from him. I only share this now as so much is being said about him already.
As for our law firm, Lewis and Garbuz, as soon as I was made aware of the diagnosis, I personally immediately contacted everyone in our firm and all were quarantined. All have been working remotely ever since. No one is commuting into the Manhattan office and no one will be until we have clearance to do so.
I would also like to take this opportunity to personally thank all of you for the outpouring of love from literally around the world and in particular members of my community who in their own way, many but not all of whom are under quarantine, are living this surreal life with us. We have wonderful friends who have cared for us despite the running fears all around us. They know who they are and we are ever grateful to them. It is my understanding that community members have been respectfully complying with health department orders to stay in. Special arrangements are being made for virtual religious services so those can remain at home as mandated.
I want to thank those who helped us get the best care possible by working their channels to get Lawrence moved to Columbia ICU where the medical care and personal sensitivity has been exemplary.
Lastly, when I first heard that Lawrence was positive, I immediately recognized there was going to be pandemonium all around us. Other than offering what I could to stop this from spreading further, all I and my family care about is that my husband/ their father get better. We shuttered the windows, turned off the internet and together stayed strong and in good spirits. I am incredibly blessed that my children while still relatively young have the wisdom to know to keep their heads clear and focus only on the important, the health of their dad and those around us.
Thank you all for your positive thoughts and prayers- I believe it is what will get us all through this trying time. I beg you all to stay calm and keep out of the hoopla. Be smart with good hygiene and know this too will pass.
Good wishes and positive thoughts for us all!”
In September 2019, she posted a photo of her and Lawrence at a pool and wrote, “Lawrence in heaven for his birthday- swimming as he watches planes take off @twahotel.” She also posted a picture of a cake and wrote, “Look what my beautiful (daughter) made for me for Mother’s Day!! Delicious too and she somehow completely hid it from me when she was making it! Late in posting but I did get it on Sunday. Anyway, let Mother’s Day continue on for a few extra days, right?”
According to The Post, the Garbuz’s neighbor also tested positive for coronavirus.
“We have unfortunately received news this morning that our student has tested positive for COVID-19. Our thoughts are with him and his family as well as to all those affected,” Yeshiva University said in a statement.
The Garbuz’s daughter attends private Jewish SAR Academy in Riverdale, The Post reports.
2. Garbuz Is a Partner in a Law Firm Across from the Grand Central Station Terminal
According to The Post, Garbuz is a partner in the small law firm of Lewis & Garbuz P.C. Attorneys and Counsellors of Law, which is located across from the Grant Central Station terminal. It’s located at 60 E. 42nd St. #4700 in New York, New York in One Grand Central Place.
His law firm’s website says that Garbuz is a partner who co-founded the law firm. The website says that his specialties are in things like wealth preservation and estate planning.
“Lawrence’s twenty year career within the field of trusts and estates runs the gamut of serving individual and institutional clients with personal estate planning, wealth preservation, estate and tax issues, Surrogate’s Court proceedings, contested proceedings, charitable giving planning as well as elder law considerations, including guardianship, Medicaid planning and planning for people with disabilities,” his law firm’s bio reads.
“Because of his level of experience, Lawrence brings a degree of sophistication and sensitivity in working with families in their time of need.”
The biography adds that Lawrence “knows that the problems and complexities that families face require thorough knowledge of the field of trusts and estates, both now and in the future. As important is the requirement that each client be treated with compassion throughout the working relationship, as the legal issues presented demand both wealth of knowledge of the law but also a key understanding of the client’s unique needs to best achieve the client’s objectives.”
The website says that Garbuz previously left a larger firm. He has appeared in Surrogate’s Court proceedings throughout “New York City, Westchester, Nassau, Suffolk and Rockland Counties.” In particular, he works on issues involving wills. He is admitted to practice law in both New York and Florida, according to his website.
3. Garbuz Is a Graduate of New York University
According to his website, Garbuz is a graduate of New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business.
He received his law degree from the Yeshiva University Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law. In law school, he was Managing Editor of the Cardozo Arts and Entertainment Law Journal, his website says.
“He is also a member of the New York State Bar Association, City Bar of New York, Westchester Bar Association and NAELA (National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Inc.)” the website says.
“Lawrence has written and talked to legal professionals, accountants, and lay people s regarding various trusts and estates and elder law topics including among them, Advanced Directives, Wealth Transfer Vehicles, Charitable and Planned Giving, and Prepayment of Tuition as an estate planning vehicle,” it reads.
4. A Brooklyn Court Was Disinfected Because a Person There Attends Garbuz’s Synagogue
Garbuz’s profession and personal life, which took him from synagogue to courthouse, have raised concern.
In fact, according to The New York Post, Brooklyn Civil Court “got a thorough disinfecting” simply because a lawyer working there attends the same synagogue as Garbuz.
Garbuz’s synagogue is the Temple Young Israel in New Rochelle, according to The Post.
The courthouse was sanitized by the Department of Citywide Administrative Services. Meanwhile, Garbuz is being treated at New York-Presbyterian/Columbia Medical Center.
5. The Mayor Says That Garbuz’s Respiratory Problems Worsened Recently
In a press conference on the situation, New York Mayor Bill DeBlasio said that authorities were testing seven other people who work at Garbuz’s law firm as a precautionary measure.
“There are seven people who work at the firm who have been identified by the Department of Health as worthy of follow-up,” DeBlasio said. “That testing will proceed. Others who did not have that direct contact have been given broad precautions and guidance.”
According to the mayor, for the past month, Garbuz (he didn’t identify him by name) had respiratory problems that then worsened.
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