Johnson & Bell prevailed in court when the 1st District Appellate Court affirmed the dismissal of a legal malpractice lawsuit a man filed against a former attorney he hired to sue a different former attorney. In 2008, the plaintiff accused his father of inducing his mother to exclude him from her will – an estate the plaintiff believed was worth $75 million. The plaintiff settled the lawsuit with his father for $1 million, then proceeded with a breach of contract lawsuit against the law firm he hired to represent him in the estate dispute. The attorney he hired to file the breach of contract lawsuit is represented by Johnson & Bell.
A Cook County judge dismissed the breach of contract lawsuit against the plaintiff’s first law firm. The dismissal was affirmed by the 1st District in 2013. Then the plaintiff filed a legal malpractice lawsuit against Johnson & Bell’s client, asserting that he negligently failed to pursue a legal malpractice claim in the underlying breach of contract suit against his attorneys from the estate dispute. Johnson & Bell obtained summary judgment in favor of their client in December 2017. The 1st District affirmed the dismissal in a unanimous opinion based upon the doctrine of collateral estoppel. Johnson & Bell Shareholders, Joseph R. Marconi and David M. Macksey, and Associate Ramses Jalalpour represented the client.