Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Dauphin v. Jennings

United States District Court, E.D. Virginia, Alexandria Division

May 3, 2017

Katherine R. Dauphin, Plaintiff,
v.
Louis A. Jennings and Beverly L. Hennager, Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          Liam O' Grady United States District Judge.

         This matter comes before the Court on Interested Party Michael Jennings' Motion to Strike Defendant Beverly Hennager's "Opposition to Attorneys [sic] fees Request", Dkt. No. 347; Plaintiffs Motion to Strike the same filing, Dkt. No. 361; Motion to Withdraw as Attorney for Defendant Beverly Hennager by William Hurd, Stephen C. Piepgrass, and the law firm of Troutman Sanders, LLP, Dkt. No, 359; Motion to Withdraw as Attorney for Defendant Beverly Hennager by Adam Kronfeld and the law firm of Duff Kronfeld & Marquardt, P.C., Dkt. No. 360; and Defendant Beverly Hennager's pro se "Motion to Continue Attorneys [sic] Representation Contingent upon Payments from Proceeds [sic] of Defendant's Property." Dkt. No, 380.

         For the reasons set forth below, counsels' Motions to Withdraw arc GRANTED. Dkt. Nos. 359, 360; Defendant Beverly Hennager's Motion to Continue is DENIED, Dkt. No. 380; and Michael Jennings and Plaintiffs Motions to Strike are DENIED. Dkt. No. 347, 361.

         I. Background

         On April 3, 2017, Defendant Hennager filed a pro se Opposition to a Supplemental Motion for Attorney Fees. Dkt. Nos. 343, 344. Michael Jennings and Plaintiff have filed related motions to strike Defendant Hennager's pro se filing because she is presently represented by counsel. Ten days after filing the pro se motion, both of Defendant Hennager's present counsel moved to withdraw their representation. See Dkt. Nos. 359, 360. Plaintiff has opposed these withdrawals on the grounds that Defendant Hennager has not articulated a reason for the withdrawal and permitting withdrawal will result in delays which will prejudice the omer parties in the dispute at a time when few issues remain to be resolved in the case. See generally Dkt. No. 370. Defendant Henager filed a further pro se motion elucidating the reasons for her present counsels' motions to withdraw and requesting that the Court pay her ongoing legal expenses from her share of the partnership assets. Dkt. No. 380.

         II. Legal Standard

         A. Attorney Withdrawal

         "Under Local Rule 83.1(G) for diis District, [n]o attorney who has entered an appearance in any civil action shall withdraw such appearance, or have it stricken from the record, except on order of the Court and after reasonable notice to the party on whose behalf said attorney has appeared." Clim-Thomas v. Keels, 2014 WL 12603134, at *2 (E.D. Va. July 21, 2014) (quotations omitted). Virginia Rule of Professional Conduct 1.16(b)(4) authorizes a lawyer's withdrawal from representation where "the client fails substantially to fulfill an obligation to the lawyer regarding the lawyer's services and has been given reasonable warning that the lawyer will withdraw unless the obligation is fulfilled." Virginia Rule of Professional Conduct 1.16(b)(5) further authorizes withdrawal from representation if "the representation will result in an unreasonable financial burden on the lawyer or has been rendered unreasonably difficult by the client." The Court has wide discretion in ruling on a motion to withdraw. See Patterson v. Gemini Org., Ltd., 2000 WL 1718542, at *2 (4th Cir. Nov. 17, 2000).

         B. Motion to Strike

         "Under Rule 11(a) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, this Court is required to strike any unsigned paper, unless the omission of the signature is corrected promptly after being called to the attention of the party." Turner v. Allmon, 2008 WL 6862526, at * 1 (E.D. Va. July 7, 2008), qff'd, 311 F.App'x 606 (4th Cir. 2009).

         III. Discussion

         The Court first addresses present counsels' Motions to Withdraw and Defendant Hennager's Motion to Continue Representation. After doing so, the Court addresses the Motions to Strike Defendant Flennager's pro se pleadings.

         A. Attorney Withdrawal

         Defendant Hennager's present counsel have moved to withdraw their representation. Mr. Hurd, Mr. Piepgrass, and Troutman Sanders, LLP indicate that their reason for moving to withdraw is that "Ms. Hennager has requested that [they] withdraw their representation." Dkt. No. 359, ¶ 4. Mr. Kronfeld and Duff Kronfeld & Marquardt, P.C., indicate ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.