US firms face autumn lawsuit spree

By James Barnes

01 October 2012 at 13:01 BST

Autumn has begun with a bang for several major US law firms, as they face high-profile litigation in courtrooms across the country.

Autumn: litigation season

Among those on the defensive are Atlanta-based King & Spalding, which is being sued in California by an expert witness who claims the firm blamed a bankrupt former client for its failure to pay invoices in connection with a huge International Trade Commission case, reports the Am Law Daily.

Royalties row

Also in court is Newark’s McCarter & English – which is being sued in a royalties row by the actor who played a childhood bully in ‘A Christmas Story’ – and SNR Denton, which is in the dock over an allegedly botched Securities and Exchange Commission filing.
Meanwhile, numerous firms are involved in offensive action, including a huge case for San Francisco-founded Gordon & Rees, which has sued aquatic conservatory Ocean Embassy in Florida over $577,161 the firm says it is owed by its former client.
Elsewhere, New York’s Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman and San Francisco’s Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe have filed a suit against the City of San Francisco regarding what the plaintiffs allege are unfair payroll taxes on partner profits.

Poker face

Others firms gearing up for litigation include DLA Piper, which is taking action against former client David Thurman over $189,372 in allegedly unpaid bills, and Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan’s suit against Yoshio Nakano and his company, the International Poker Players Association, over $14,670 in allegedly unpaid bills connected to trademark-related work.


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