The attorneys who represented the plaintiff class in a class action moved the trial court for approval of a settlement of the action; they also moved for an award of attorney fees and a division of the award among cocounsel.
The division of fees between two of the attorneys was disputed, one seeking compensation in accordance with an alleged written agreement for the division of the fees and the other contending the purported agreement was unenforceable. The trial court made an award of attorney fees and divided the fees in accordance with the alleged fee division agreement.
Appellant challenged the enforceability of that agreement and the division of the attorney fee award between himself and respondent.
The cases that invalidate contracts because they violate Rules of Professional Conduct do not mandate forfeiture of all compensation for the work the attorney performed. Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton, LLP v. J-M Manufacturing Co., Inc. (2018) 6 Cal.5th 59, 87-89. “that an attorney’s breach of a rule of professional conduct may negate an attorney’s claim for fees,” but added that effect was not automatic. Pringle v. La Chapelle (1999) 73 Cal.App.4th 1000 -1006; Mardirossian & Associates, Inc. v. Ersoff (2007) 153 Cal.App.4th 257 , 277-279. Courts may consider the doctrine of In Pari Delicto.
The California Court of Appeal reversed and remanded for a redetermination of the division of the attorney fee award between appellant and respondent.
If you are in court facing a lawsuit and litigation, you need a competent and tenacious attorney to recover all your damages; contact the Law Office of Robert Rodriguez immediately! Call 209-596-4263, or, (510) 736-4033!
Robert Rodriguez has litigated well over 100 family law cases and civil litigation matters including personal injury motor vehicle cases, dog bite and slip & fall cases, breach of contract, defamation & invasion of privacy, fraud, unfair business practice, malicious prosecution, workplace and employment matters including sexual harassment, wrongful termination, wage & hour violations, discrimination pursuant to the FEHA, Gov’t Code §§ 12940 et seq., violations of the FMLA & Pregnancy Leave, Civil Rights discrimination pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act in the State of California and California federal district courts.
* Disclaimer – Robert Rodriguez is licensed to practice only in the State of California & this analysis is applied only under State of California law. Robert Rodriguez is also admitted to practice in the U.S. District Courts, Central, Northern & Eastern Districts of California.
LEGAL ADVERTISEMENT – Robert Rodriguez, Best Divorce & Personal Injury Attorney in Pleasanton California