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Dewey’s Unfinished Business with Paul Hastings under Settlement

On Monday, Dewey Counsel Scott Ratner filed papers in the bankruptcy court stating that the Dewey estate has reached a settlement over unfinished business with the law firm Paul Hastings and two former Dewey partners who work at the firm.

In total, Paul Hastings and the two concerned partners would pay close to $1.6 million to the Dewey estate and in exchange, they would be released from potential litigation and clawback claims.

The new deal is the second settlement over Dewey’s unfinished business. In October, last year, Jones Day and Bruce Bennett settled with the Dewey estate with Bennett agreeing to hand over 15 percent of the profits from his work done for the Los Angeles Dodgers.

In the instant case, the law firm of Paul Hastings has agreed to pay $575,000 to secure a release from potential clawback litigation over the former Dewey partners now in the firm’s employment. The four former Dewey partners are Michael Fitzgerald, the firm’s Latin America practice leader, antitrust partner Mary Jean Moltenbrey, and corporate partners Arturo Carrillo and Taisa Markus.

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In his Monday filing, Ratner stated, “The Debtor believes this settlement may serve as a catalyst for the future resolution of unfinished business claims.”

While Moltenbrey and Markus are not required to pay anything under the instant settlement because they had joined the earlier settlement of the Dewey estate with 450 former partners; Fitzgerald and Carrillo would be paying a collective sum of $1 million.

Though earlier, Fitzgerald had opposed any settlement and had in fact declared that it was Dewey which owed him close to $38 million on promises of compensation and pension benefits the firm had failed to keep, apparently he would like to go past the chapter and focus on his current priorities.

Dewey’s liquidation plan has already been approved on Feb 27 by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Martin Glenn, after Dewey secured settlements with both former partners and retirees. In the settlement with former partners, more than 450 attorneys agreed to pay a collective sum of $71.5 million in exchange of the promise that the Dewey estate would allow them to get on with their lives without the haunting spectre of claw backs.

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