Goodell DeVries Wins Legal Malpractice Appeal in Virginia in Case of First Impression

By: GDLD | 10.31.18 | Case Results

In a successful appeal spearheaded by Jeffrey J. Hines and, Craig S. Brodsky the Supreme Court of Virginia reversed the dismissal of a legal malpractice action, holding that our client, Dr. Marc Labgold, and not the bankruptcy trustee, owned the claim against his former bankruptcy counsel. Dr. Labgold’s case was dismissed by the Circuit Court for the City of Alexandria when it found the claim was the property of the bankruptcy estate. The Goodell DeVries attorneys successfully petitioned the Supreme Court of Virginia to accept the appeal, and then successfully briefed and argued that Dr. Labgold had standing to pursue his claim because, although the lawyer committed pre-petition breaches, Dr. Labgold also alleged separate post-petition breaches that belonged to him rather than the bankruptcy estate. This was a case of first impression in Virginia involving ownership of a legal malpractice claim when the lawyer has committed both pre and post-petition breaches in the course of representing the debtor in a bankruptcy proceeding. A copy of the Order can be found here: Labgold v. Linda D. Regenhardt, No. 171640, 2018 WL 5077909 (Va. Oct. 18, 2018).