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Tag: Ethics

May 5, 2011

Lemmer v. Charney (2011) 195 Cal.App.4th 99

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The Second District holds that a provision in a contingency fee agreement that mandated the case proceed to settlement or trial was void as against public policy. Don Lemmer represented Jeffrey Charney on an hourly basis in a lawsuit against Charney’s former employer Teleflora LLC.  After several months, the parties entered into a new contingency […]

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May 5, 2011

Schimmel v. Levin (May 5, 2011, C.A. 3rd Dist., Case No. C063214)

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Download Publication The Third District holds a trial court may strike a petition to compel arbitration after it determined the attorney who filed the petition was disqualified due to possession of confidential information adverse to the opposing party. Leon Schimmel served as medical director for Community Health Associates Medical Group (“Community Health”) from 1995 through […]

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April 27, 2011

Gutierrez v. Giradi (2011) 194 Cal.App.4th 925

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The Second District holds that the case-with-a-case proof of causation generally applicable to malpractice and breach of fiduciary duties claims is irrelevant to claims that an attorney misappropriated settlement funds. Luis Gutierrez was represented in a class action against his employer Lockheed Corporation by Thomas Girardi and his law firm.  Over a ten year period […]

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April 6, 2011

Liberty National Enterprises, LP v. Chicago Title Insurance Co. (2011) 194 Cal.App.4th 839

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The Second District holds that a delayed motion to disqualify filed after counsel had achieved partial success on the merits, and premised on unrelated prior representation, was properly denied. Liberty National Enterprises, L.P. (Liberty) retained Donald McDougal to sue its title insurer, Chicago Title Insurance Company (Chicago), for bad faith.  After two years of litigation […]

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February 11, 2011

Coretronic Corp. v. Cozen O’Connor (2011) 192 Cal.App.4th 1381

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Download Publication The Second District holds that a case alleging ethical violations was not subject to the anti-SLAPP statute because the gravamen of the claims was unrelated to protected activity. Coretronic Corporation, Optoma Technology, Inc., and Technical Service Corporation (Coretronic) were sued by E & S International Enterprises, Inc.  (E & S) in a trade […]

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January 27, 2011

Brown v. Grimes (2011) 192 Cal.App.4th 265

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Download Publication The Second District holds that under basic contract principles, a referring attorney’s breach of his agreement to pay the source of his referrals was a breach of the fee sharing agreeing and disallowed recovery.  In addition, neither the referring nor the accepting attorney could enforce a fee sharing contract that did not comply […]

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November 29, 2010

Arnall v. Superior Court (Liker) (2010) 190 Cal.App.4th 360

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Download Publication The Second District holds that a client may void a contingent fee in a contract that failed to include statutory language about the negotiability of the fee. Alan Liker, an attorney specializing in taxation matters and complex business transactions, entered into two agreements with Dawn Arnall and her companies to provide tax advice.  […]

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April 26, 2010

Plummer v. Day/Eisenberg (2010) 184 Cal.App.4th 38

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Download Publication  The Fourth District holds that attorneys who attempt to avoid a valid lien asserted by prior counsel can be subject to both conversion and interference with prospective economic advantage claims.  The Court also held that attorneys need not comply with a Rule of Professional Conduct pertaining to taking an interest adverse to a […]

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October 27, 2008

Williams v. Russ (2008) 167 Cal. App.4th 1215

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Download Publication The Second District holds that dismissal of a legal malpractice case is warranted for a party’s intentional destruction of the attorney’s file. Doug Williams was the administrator and trustee of an employee benefits and retirement plan.  He was involved in litigation in federal court that was settled but which led to his removal […]

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September 30, 2008

Wood v. Jamison (2008) 167 Cal.App.4th 156

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Download Publication The Second District holds that an attorney engaged in conflicts of interest and self-dealing was subject to both damages and attorney’s fees and costs under the Elder Abuse Act.  After several life crises, Merle Peterson, an elderly woman, met Patrick McComb, who falsely told her he was her nephew. Peterson transferred a significant […]

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