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Ambiguous Retainer Equals No Fee

Posted May 8, 2007 8:00 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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A federal judge has ruled that New York law requires a lawyer’s ambiguous retainer agreement to be read in favor of the client.

As a result, Barry Fredericks won’t be able to collect a contingency fee for a case that lost on a motion for summary judgment, then settled while an appeal was pending, the New York Law Journal reports. The appeal had been filed by another lawyer.

Fredericks represented a company in a contract dispute with Slim-Fast over an agreement to distribute products in Israel.

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