Fox Rothschild LLP v. Young


IN THE SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE FOX ROTHSCHILD LLP, a Pennsylvania ) Limited Liability Partnership, ) ) Plaintiff, ) ) v. ) C.A. No. N19C-01-242 EMD ) KENNETH YOUNG, ) ) Defendant. ) ORDER GRANTING IN PART AND DENYING IN PART PLAINTIFF’S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT ON COUNT I OF ITS COMPLAINT AND DEFENDANT’S AFFIRMATIVE DEFENSES Upon consideration of the Plaintiff’s Motion for Summary Judgment on Count I of Its Complaint and Defendant’s Affirmative Defenses (the “Motion”) filed by Plaintiff Fox Rothschild LLP (“Fox Rothschild”); Defendant’s Response to Motion for Summary Judgment on Count I of Its Complaint and Defendant’s Affirmative Defenses (the “Response”) filed by Defendant Kenneth Young; and the entire docket of this civil action, 1. On July 3, 2020, Fox Rothschild filed the Motion. The Motion seeks summary judgment on Count I of the Complaint and the affirmative defenses asserted by Mr. Young. Fox Rothschild contends that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that Fox Rothschild is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law for the breach of contract (Count I). The Contract is an engagement agreement for legal services (the “Agreement”) 1 between Mr. Young and Fox Rothschild. Fox Rothschild notes that Mr. Young admitted in his answer and in his deposition to the existence of the Agreement. In addition, Fox Rothschild contends that Mr. Young acknowledged that services were rendered. Moreover, Fox Rothschild notes that Mr. Young 1 Mot., Rushdan Aff. at Ex. A. failed to raise any objection in writing Fox Rothschild’s invoices within fifteen (15) days after submission as required by the Agreement. 2. Mr. Young opposes the Motion. Mr. Young makes three arguments. First, Mr. Young contends summary judgment would be premature because he has not completed discovery. Second, Mr. Young argues that there is a factual dispute as the amount and reasonableness of the fees billed under the Agreement. Mr. Young concedes “he is liable for services actually rendered.”2 Third, Mr. Young claims that he has facts supporting affirmative defenses on a compromise on amounts owed under the Agreement (what he calls an “accord and satisfaction”) and a need to mitigate. 3. The original TSO set the discovery deadline for May 15, 2020. By motion, Mr. Young sought to extend the discovery deadline. Mr. Young filed that motion after Fox Rothschild filed the Motion and after the initial discovery deadline expired. After a hearing, the Court denied Mr. Young’s motion extend the discovery deadline by an Order entered on August 10, 2020.3 4. The standard of review on a motion for summary judgment is well-settled. The Court’s principal function when considering a motion for summary judgment is to examine the record to determine whether genuine issues of material fact exist, “but not to decide such issues.”4 5. Summary judgment will be granted if, after viewing the record in a light most favorable to a nonmoving party, no genuine issues of material fact exist and the moving party is 2 Resp. at …

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