Kenneth Nelson hired Quarles & Brady, LLP (“QB”) to represent him in a breach of oral contract dispute against Richard Curia, the general manager of Nelson’s two automobile dealerships. Summary judgment was granted in that case, requiring Nelson to sell shares of one dealership to Curia. Nelson appealed, discharged QB, and then hired new counsel. The Seventh Circuit reversed the district court’s summary judgment ruling, after which Nelson settled with Curia and sued QB for legal malpractice. After amendment, dismissal, appeal, and remand, Nelson filed the instant complaint against QB.
In it, Nelson sought to establish proximate causation by proving the case within the case, i.e., that but for QB’s negligent failure to investigate and raise certain arguments, he would have prevailed in the underlying oral contract dispute. The district court disagreed with this assertion, and the appellate court affirmed. In its decision, the appellate court held that Nelson “failed to establish even the existence of a contract,” let alone that there was something QB should have done to save his case. Id. at 143.
(This is for informational purposes and is not legal advice.)