Thursday, August 18, 2022

Supreme Court of Pennsylvania Allows Legal Malpractice Claim Based Upon Scope of a Release to Proceed

In the case of Khalil v. Williams, No. 24 EAP 2021 (Pa. July 20, 2022) (Maj. Op. by Todd), the Pennsylvania Supreme Court addressed the issue of whether the Plaintiff’s legal malpractice claims against her former attorneys were barred under the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s previous decision in the case of Muhammad v. Strassburger, McKenna, Messer, Shilobod & Gutnick, 587 A.2d 1346 (Pa. 1991), which held that a Plaintiff could not sue his or her attorney on the basis of the adequacy of a settlement to which the Plaintiff had agreed, unless the Plaintiff alleged that the settlement was the result of fraud.

After reviewing the record on appeal before it in this case, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that the Plaintiff’s Complaint demonstrated that the Plaintiff was not merely challenging the amount of her settlement, but rather was alleging that the attorneys provided incorrect legal advice regarding the scope and effect of the Release presented by the insurance carrier. As such, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court held that the prohibition set forth in the Muhammad case on legal malpractice lawsuits based upon the adequacy of settlements was not implicated by the record in this case.

Anyone wishing to review a copy of the Majority Opinion by Justice Todd for this decision may click this LINK.

The Concurring Opinion by Justice Wecht may be viewed HERE.

The Concurring Opinion by Justice Mundy may be viewed HERE.

Source of image:  Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from

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