Aug 5th, 2013

FKB’s Andrew S. Kowlowitz and Partnership Dispute Litigation team, obtains summary judgment for a matrimonial law firm and secures judgment in excess of $200,000 for unpaid legal fees.

FKB’s client is a matrimonial law firm, who was previously retained by the defendant/client in a divorce proceeding. Pursuant to the retainer agreement, the defendant agreed to pay the firm based upon its regularly established hourly rates. The firm rendered extensive legal services on behalf of the defendant, and mailed invoices on various occasions requesting payment of fees. The defendant ceased paying the invoices, but did not raise any questions or concerns regarding their accuracy.

On behalf of its client, FKB brought suit seeking payment of outstanding legal fees. After discovery, FKB moved for an Order pursuant to CPLR § 3212 seeking summary judgment on the basis of an account stated. FKB argued that since the debt had not been disputed by defendant, the defendant’s belated claims that the legal fees were excessive or unreasonable were unsustainable.

On August 5, 2013, Justice George J. Silver (New York County Supreme) granted FKB’s motion for summary judgment in its entirety. The court found that the defendant failed to set forth any evidence that the bills were properly objected or that defendant raised an objection in a timely manner. Justice Silver awarded the Firm judgment in excess of $200,000.

If you have any questions concerning this decision, or the representation of law firms in general, please feel free to contact Andrew S. Kowlowitz.