Law Firms

BigLaw firm settles suit accusing it of 'billing feeding frenzy'

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Morrison & Foerster has reached a confidential settlement in a lawsuit accusing the law firm of “egregious overbilling” and a “billing feeding frenzy” after it was hired to help wind down several companies.

The deal was reached in mediation, the Texas Lawyer reports.

One of the plaintiffs in the case was Firestar Diamond International, which is owned by a jewelry designer who has been accused of bank fraud by India’s Punjab National Bank.

The suit had claimed that Morrison & Foerster “expended an exorbitant and excessive amount of time, primarily on matters that had little to do with winding down the entities.” The suit also alleged that Morrison & Foerster liquidated claims at “at a major discount,” so some of the funds could be sent to the law firm’s trust account and applied to its bills.

The federal suit, initially filed in Austin, Texas, in February, was voluntarily dismissed and refiled in Travis County, Texas. Morrison & Foerster had released a statement at the time of the initial filing that said the claims had no merit.

The plaintiffs were represented by the Buzbee Law Firm in Houston.

“The parties have come to a mutual settlement, and the terms of the settlement are confidential,” said Houston lawyer Peter Taaffe, of counsel at the Buzbee Law Firm, in a statement released to the Texas Lawyer. “The plaintiff parties also add that ‘Morrison & Foerster provided plaintiffs with valuable legal work, and plaintiffs appreciate its counsel.’ ”

The case was Synergies Corp. v. Morrison Foerster.

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