Thursday, January 20, 2011
The Mississippi Supreme Court has held that a legal malpractice suit was improperly dismissed. The plaintiff is a nursing home that had been the subject of complaints. The nursing home's insurer retained counsel to defend the claims. The nursing home also had an insurance policy covering excess amounts beyond the obligations of the primary insurer.
The underlying cases settled for an amount in excess of the primary insurer's policy limits. The nursing home then sued the law firm, claiming that the firm's negligence was the cause of the settlement that required payment from the excess insurance.
The court here, resolving a question of first impression, found the allegations of negligence sufficient to defeat the motion to dismiss. The surviving claim is one of equitable subrogation, not legal malpractice. (Mike Frisch)