Attorney Fees; Withdrawing representation on contingency fee arrangement, lawyer still entitled to quantum merit recovery: Bradley v. Est. of Herman Lester, COA, Pub., 11/11/2011

Termination of representation on a contingent fee contract places payment for  your services from the recovery in jeopardy.  In the following COA decision, withdrawing cost the attorney his contractual contingent fee but permitting the attorney a quantum merit recovery for his services.

1045.  ATTORNEY FEES.  CONTRACT VS. QUANTUM MERUIT UPON VOLUNTARY WITHDRAWING.
BRADLEY (SAM), ET AL.
VS.
ESTATE OF HERMAN LESTER
OPINION VACATING AND REMANDING
ACREE (PRESIDING JUDGE)
DIXON (CONCURS) AND LAMBERT (CONCURS)
2009-CA-002157-MR
TO BE PUBLISHED
FLOYD

ACREE, JUDGE: Appellants appeal the Floyd Circuit Court’s order awarding attorney fees to the Appellee, the Estate of Herman Lester. Specifically, the question presented is whether an attorney who withdraws from representation is entitled to recover his fee pursuant to the original contingency fee agreement, or limited to recovery on a quantum meruit basis. Upon the facts before us, we find quantum meruit is the proper calculation of fees. Therefore, we vacate the order of the Floyd Circuit Court and remand for additional proceedings.

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