Summary Judgment Flushes Claims of Mishandled Escrow Account
Shannon Sprinkle and Joe Kingma won Summary Judgment on February 16, 2011, for a well-known law firm.The Law Firm had acted as escrow agent for a consortium of developers who built a network of sewer pump stations. The final cost exceeded the Seven Million Dollar budget and the primary contractor for the project demanded an additional $1.5M from the developers for allegedly completed but unpaid work. As the escrowed funds were insufficient to meet the new demands, the Law Firm filed an Interpleader action seeking to deposit the remaining escrow sums into court.One of the developers, against whom the additional demands for payment from the contractor was made, filed a counterclaim against the Law Firm alleging that it had mishandled the escrow account, resulting in undisclosed damages.Carlock Copeland aggressively defended the counterclaim demonstrating through the depositions of representatives for the counterclaimant developer that it had suffered no damages other than approximately $70,000 it had paid its lawyers to pursue meritless claims. The Court also found that the developer could not show that the Law Firm had done anything improper in its administration of the escrow account to cause any damages.Carlock Copeland’s Motion for Summary Judgment was successful and the developer’s claims were dismissed.