Goodell DeVries Obtains Writ of Certiorari in Appeal of Legal Malpractice Action

By: GDLD | 4.4.18 | Case Results

On April 11, 2018, Jeffrey J. Hines and Craig S. Brodsky successfully petitioned the Supreme Court of Virginia for a writ of certiorari in a legal malpractice proceeding.  In the legal malpractice case, the client alleged his former attorney committed malpractice while representing him during his Chapter 7 bankruptcy causing, among other items of damage, his discharge in bankruptcy to be denied. Both the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia and the Circuit Court for the City of Alexandria held that the legal malpractice claim belonged solely to the bankruptcy trustee and that the client lacked standing to pursue his claim for legal malpractice. In addition, both trial courts denied the client’s motion to amend his complaint in which he sought to clarify his allegations of negligence. In their Petition for Appeal, the Goodell DeVries team argued the cause of action accrued after the filing of the Chapter 7 Petition and, therefore, he had standing to pursue the claim. The team also argued the trial court deprived the client of his right to a jury trial when it held as a matter of law that the client lacked standing and that the trial courts abused their discretion when denying the motions to amend the complaint.