Law firm's contract with marketing company was illegal, court rules

By Charmaine Little | Nov 23, 2018

SAN DIEGO — The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California gave mixed rulings over motions for summary judgments in a fraud case related to a law firm’s promotional campaign.

The case involves plaintiffs Louisiana lawyers Andre Toce and Gil Dozier, who sued legal marketing specialist Wise Law Group (WLG) over a campaign to obtain leads for medical patients.

Toce and Dozier said WLG had vowed to deliver unlimited leads until they got to 100 cases, but WLG’s invoice says it only needed to provide 62 leads.

Also in contention is an asset purchase agreement between WLG, co-defendant Cameron Rentch and Thomson Reuters and whether the purchase included the Toce and Dozier campaign agreement.

Toce and Dozier sued for fraudulent concealment, breach of implied duty to perform with reasonable care, breach of covenant of good faith and fair dealing, two counts of breach of contract, and quantum merit. Reuters also filed a cross-lawsuit against Rentch and WLG for breach of contract and declaratory relief.

The court granted in part and denied in part Rentch and Wise Law Group’s motion for summary judgement against Toce and Dozier, denied Rentch and WLG’s motion for summary judgement, and granted in part and denied in part Reuters’ motion for summary judgement on his cross-complaint.

The court ruled that the campaign agreement was illegal, according to the document. The plaintiffs had not only failed to show a breach of contract happened, but the contract was illegal anyway, it said.

It granted Reuters’ motion for summary judgement concerning the illegality of the contract, but denied Reuters’ claims that it wasn’t a party involved in the matter concerning fraudulent transfer. The court also denied Reuters’ motion for summary judgement for loss of profits, arguing that damages in this case were completely speculative.

U.S. District Judge Anthony J. Battaglia ruled on the case.

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