101 South Hanley, Suite 1280 Clayton, MO 63105
314.283.8930

Monthly Archives: July 2017

Bad Faith Refusal to Settle

Though rarely asserted, there is such a claim as suing an insurance for bad faith for failure to settle a claim.¬†Zumwalt v. Utilities Insurance Co., 228 S.W.2d 750, (Mo. 1950). This is technically different than a statutory vexatious refusal to pay claim. What constitutes “bad faith” for purposes of this claim? As a general matter, […]

Read More

Special Circumstances Exception to Attorney Fees

There are exceptions to the general rule that a party/litigant must cover its attorney fees in litigation regardless of the outcome. The exceptions are when (1) fees are authorized by statute or contract, (2) very unusual circumstances exist so it may be said equity demands a balance of benefits, (3) the fees result from an […]

Read More

Third-Party Beneficiary Contracts

While it may seem counter-intuitive and illogical, it is possible for a third-party to a contract (i.e., a non-signer) to sue one of the parties to the contract for breach of contract. A third party beneficiary to a contract is one who is not privy to a contract or its consideration but who may still […]

Read More

Computer Tampering, Trade Secrets

One common area of business disputes is to what extent non-compete, non-solicitation and confidentiality provisions are enforceable and valid when an employee leaves an employer. Related disputes pertaining to whether an employee breaches his or her duty of loyalty by going beyond merely preparing to leave and engages in direct competition are also common. This […]

Read More

Breach of Fiduciary Duty and Compensation Forfeiture

A breach of fiduciary duty occurs when an individual or entity fails to follow his, her or its fiduciary obligations. More often than not, it is used by a plaintiff as a legal basis for damages against someone who breaches his or her fiduciary duty (e.g., failure to manage property, ¬†misappropriation of funds, etc.). It […]

Read More

Right to Jury Trial; Jury Trial Waiver

Both the Missouri Constitution and US Constitution guarantee the right to trial by jury in certain cases. In Missouri, the right to a jury trial is “implied in all cases in which an issue of fact, in an action for the recovery of money only, is inolved, whether the right is one at common law […]

Read More

Undue Influence in Wills, Trusts, Deeds, Nonprobate Transfers: Factors

Wills, trusts, deeds, and nonprobate transfers (e.g., beneficiary designations, transfer on death or payable on death arrangements) are sometimes challenged on the basis of undue influence. Undue influence is when one individual induces another by “active conduct” to provide a substantial benefit through the transfer of property. Undue influence cases are evaluated on a case-by-case […]

Read More