Abbott v. Chelsea

This case arose after the settlement of Guard v. American Home Products, Inc., which was brought by Kentucky residents who had taken the diet drug known as Fen-Phen. Each Appellant was a plaintiff in the Guard case and was represented under a contingent fee contract by Appellees, a team of four attorneys. Appellants filed a complaint alleging that Appellees breached their fiduciary duties by wrongfully retaining or improperly disbursing a portion of the Guard case settlement money that should have gone to Appellants. The trial court granted partial summary judgment to Appellants, finding three of the attorneys breached their fiduciary duty. The court of appeals reversed and remanded the case against the three attorneys for further proceedings. The Supreme Court reversed the court of appeals' opinion regarding the issue of the three attorneys' breach of fiduciary duty and reinstated the partial summary judgment entered against them, holding, primarily, (1) the facts established a breach of fiduciary duty that entitled Appellants to summary judgment on the three attorneys' liability as a matter of law; and (2) the court of appeals did not err by declining to review the trial court's denial of summary judgment against the fourth attorney, as the order was not appealable. View "Abbott v. Chelsea " on Justia Law