Our client had claims against the plaintiffs on his cross-complaint for fraud and breach of fiduciary duty. Client claimed plaintiffs defrauded him in a land exchange transaction between their partnership and the U.S. Navy arising out of a constructive condemnation of real estate owned by their partnership. Our client had also brought a legal malpractice claim against the lawyer and the law firm that represented our client and the plaintiffs in the land exchange transaction and in the preparation of an agreement between our client and the plaintiffs for the allocation of land that was to be received by them from the Navy. The basis for the legal malpractice claim was that the lawyers represented conflicts of interest between our client and the plaintiffs in such representation without adequate disclosure to our client and without his written consent. The lawyer and his law firm settled with out client for $225,000 on the day the trial was supposed to commence.
Our client prevailed during the jury trial of his claims against the plaintiffs. The jury rendered special verdicts awarding our client on a joint and several judgment against the plaintiffs for $294,000 on his fraud claim against them. On the reference portion of the case ordered to be heard by a referee, I obtained a economic benefit to the partnership involved in this case and a order for an adjustment to the partnership books and records in the sum of $175,000 and against the plaintiffs which was ordered by the referee due to the plaintiff's improper entry of items in the books and records of the partnership which benefitted them personally but were improper. The trial judge did not like the jury verdict and issued a directed verdict for the cross-defendants on our verdict. The court’s ruling was appealed and the court of appeal reinstated the jury’s verdict. Final judgment was then rendered for our client including costs of suit.