George Flynn and Edward Hynes Snatch Victory From the Jaws of a Failed Settlement
Judge Matthew Kennelly, of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, granted summary judgment for the defense in a legal malpractice action defended by George K. Flynn and Edward W. Hynes of Clausen Miller. The complex matter arose out of attempts by their client, a New Jersey attorney, to collect unpaid legal fees stemming from his representation of the Plaintiff in Illinois litigation involving disputes with its clients over television services Plaintiff provided. The New Jersey attorney formed a corporation and purchased a judgement against his former client in order to collect the unpaid fees. In response, Plaintiff filed Retaliatory claims of legal malpractice and breach of fiduciary duty alleging the improper use of confidential information and a conflict of interest. The case was settled in 2015, but the Plaintiff breached the settlement agreement. After a near settlement in principle in 2017, Plaintiff filed a motion to enforce settlement. The motion to enforce was denied by District Judge Amy St. Eve, after the Plaintiff attempted to alter material terms of a complex settlement framework while moving to enforce those terms (2018 U.S. Dist. Lexis 16792). Judge St. Eve was subsequently nominated to the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, and Judge Kennelly was assigned the case. Judge Kennelly ultimately found that the Plaintiff failed to establish that Defendant used confidential information in pursuit of the fees, and granted summary judgment, ending the case (2018 U.S. Dist. Lexis 147412).