A jury has delivered a $5 million legal malpractice verdict against a Detroit law firm in the U.S. District Court for Eastern Michigan. Jaffe, Raitt, Heuer & Weiss was retained to “vet” a Minneapolis-based office furniture manufacturer for potential acquisition for a client. The firm allegedly failed to advise the client concerning the buyer’s $3.26 million underfunded pension liability. In fact, the firm advised its clients that it had no exposure for the liability.
The Texas Court of Appeals has recently dismissed a legal malpractice claim against a Florida attorney for lack of jurisdiction. In Rolnick v. Sight’s My Line, Inc., the owner of a Florida corporation filed a legal malpractice claim against several Texas law firms, alleging that they had failed to properly perfect a security interest on behalf of the corporation.
The Fourth District Court of Appeals of California recently reversed a decision of the trial court dismissing a legal malpractice claim based on a lapsed one-year statute of limitations. In Kelly v. Orr, a grantor created a trust agreement that named a successor trustee upon the resignation of the current trustee. However, when the current trustee resigned, the daughter of the grantor seized control of the trust and became trustee. She then retained a law firm using trust assets and followed their advice on how to manage the trust.
The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New York recently affirmed the decision of New York’s Supreme Court, dismissing a legal malpractice claim. In McPhillips v. Bauman, a physician employed by the Department of Corrections sued an Assistant Attorney General who was assigned to represent him in a lawsuit brought by the estate of a deceased inmate.
The Appellate Court of Illinois, Second District, recently affirmed the decision of a lower court, dismissing a legal malpractice action. In Davidson v. Gurewitz, a father sued an attorney, who had served as a Court appointed child representative in the father’s custody battle with the child’s mother.
The Supreme Judicial Court (“SJC”) recently suspended a Massachusetts attorney, who made intentional misrepresentations to four of his clients. In the matter of Alexander R. Cain, an attorney was found to have fabricated documents, lied to his clients, and failed to diligently pursue his client’s claims and interests.
An Evidentiary Panel of the Grievance Committee for the State Bar of Texas has disbarred a Texas Attorney for practicing law while his license was suspended. In Commission for Lawyer Discipline v. Charles D. Septowski, an attorney was serving a three month suspension under a previous disciplinary judgment.
A Magistrate Judge in the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey has held that an attorney defending a legal malpractice suit, is not limited to the discovery previously conducted in an underlying action. In Smith v. DeZao, a family hired an attorney to represent them in a wrongful death suit against a New Jersey timeshare company, which booked a vacation for the family at a resort in Mexico. Continue reading
The Supreme Court of Idaho has reversed the dismissal of a legal malpractice action on the basis that the case was not time-barred under the applicable statute of limitations. In Minnick v. Ennis, a husband and wife owned a large tract of land in Idaho, which they intended to develop into a residential subdivision. They hired an attorney to assist them with the project. Continue reading