Firm Prevailed Against Legal Malpractice/Breach of Fiduciary Duty Claim

Rob Klein and Mark Sullivan were successful in striking a legal malpractice/breach of fiduciary duty claim as a sham in an action against an attorney in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. The plaintiff claimed his attorney had deliberately misinterpreted a fee agreement, and that the attorney had retained a litigation retainer which the plaintiff claimed he had paid personally to the attorney’s firm. The Firm’s motion to strike explained that the monies provided as a retainer did not actually belong to the plaintiff, and were characterized as a contribution to the working capital of the attorney’s corporate client, to be used for the litigation. After an evidentiary hearing, the trial court agreed that the plaintiff could not seek recovery on any one of multiple theories of liability, where the funds in question had been provided for the benefit of the corporate client, and the plaintiff had received beneficial tax treatment where the funds in question were characterized as a contribution to capital on his tax returns. The court specifically entered an order allowing recovery of attorney’s fees, based upon a finding that the entire claim was frivolous.

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