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Jul 30, 2010

Attorneys – Tort/Negligence – Personal Injury – Settlement Proceeds – Medical Expenses – Contingency Fee

T.A. Loving Co. v. Denton. (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-02-0723, 10 pp.) (Terrence W. Boyle, J.) E.D.N.C. Holding: Where the defendant-attorney and his law firm were not signatories to plaintiff’s health-care plan, did not otherwise agree to disburse funds in accordance with plan provisions, and did not wrongfully enable the plan beneficiary to avoid the plan’s […]

Jul 26, 2010

Workers’ Compensation – Promissory Estoppel – Untimely Claim – Reliance – Lack of Coverage – Number of Employees – Attorneys

Brattain v. Nutri-Lawn, Inc. (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-16-0705, 10 pp.) (Martha A. Geer, J.) Appealed from the Industrial Commission. N.C. App. Unpub. Holding: Defendant is not estopped from relying on the two-year filing limit for workers’ comp claims, despite the employer’s owner telling plaintiff that the employer had too few employees to need workers’ comp […]

Jul 25, 2010

Criminal Practice – Attorneys – Right to Counsel – Forfeiture of Trial Counsel – Term of Forfeiture – First Impression – Appellate Counsel – Re-Sentencing

State v. Boyd. (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-07-0677, 9 pp.) (Sam Ervin IV, J.) Appealed from Halifax County Superior Court. (Alma L. Hinton, J.) N.C. App. Holding: Even though defendant forfeited his right to representation by counsel at trial, since he accepted the appointment and representation of appellate counsel, his forfeiture of counsel did not extend […]

Jul 16, 2010

Attorneys – Criminal Contempt – Notice & Opportunity to Be Heard – Criminal Practice – Witness Examination

In re Sutton. (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-16-0644, 7 pp.) (Cheri Beasley, J.) Appealed from Pitt County Superior Court. (Russell W. Duke, J.). N.C. App. Unpub. Holding: Because the trial court failed to provide an attorney the opportunity to respond to a charge of contempt, the trial court’s finding that he acted in a willfully contemptuous […]

Jul 16, 2010

Bankruptcy – Attorneys – Fee Disgorgement – Real Property – Failed Sale – Earnest Money – Administrative Costs

D & M Land Co. v. Branch Banking & Trust Co. (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-02-0656, 8 pp.) (Terrence W. Boyle, J.) E.D.N.C. Holding: Where the appellee-bank held a first deed of trust on the appellant-debtor’s sole asset – a parcel of real property – the bank is entitled to the earnest money from a failed […]

Jun 28, 2010

Attorneys – Pro Hac Vice Practice – Revocation – Trial Court’s Discretion – Opponent’s Expert – Ex Parte Contact

Sisk v. Transylvania Community Hospital, Inc. (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-06-0569, 17 pp.) (Robert H. Edmunds Jr., J.) Appealed from Transylvania County Superior Court. (Richard L. Doughton, J.) On discretionary review from the N.C. Court of Appeals. N.C. S. Ct. Holding: Even though out-of-state counsel may not be said to have violated the N.C. Rules of […]

Jun 14, 2010

Attorneys – Ethics – Rules of Professional Conduct – Judicial Code of Conduct – Intentional Misrepresentation

North Carolina State Bar v. Hunter. (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-07-0521, 24 pp.) (Linda M. McGee, J.) Appealed from the Disciplinary Hearing Committee of the N.C. State Bar. N.C. App. Unpub. Holding: The defendant’s use of the moniker “Madame Justice” constituted an intentional and knowing misrepresentation of her identity or qualifications such that she would likely […]

Jun 14, 2010

Lawyers left out: Settlement shops drive dirt lawyers out, costs and claims for consumers up

News of guilty pleas from principals of Charlotte’s Settlement Source who admitted to embezzling $2.4 million from clients in real estate transactions between 2005 and 2007 may not have come as a surprise to attorneys familiar with the growing problem of unregulated settlement shops. In fact it may only be the tip of the iceberg, […]

May 5, 2010

Breach of Fiduciary Duty – Constructive Fraud – Civil Practice – Statute of Limitations – Attorneys – Unjust Enrichment

Capps v. Blondeau. N.C. Bus. Ct. Holding: Plaintiff's allegations of breach of fiduciary duty and constructive fraud so pervade all her claims that all her claims against the defendant-attorney and the defendant-stock broker are governed by the 10-year statute of limitations for constructive fraud.

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