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Florida's Third DCA Affirms Denial of Fees Based on a PFS Which Required the Party's Attorney to Satisfy Claims of Third Parties

By Karma Hall, Esq.

In Florida Peninsula Ins. Co. v. Brunner, No. 3D15-1677 (June 08, 2016), Florida's Third District Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court's denial of Florida Peninsula Ins. Co.'s motion for attorney’s fees based on a proposal for settlement which "purported to impose liability for an indeterminate category of 'other claims of third parties' on the [insured's] counsel, a non-party in the underlying suit.  In reaching its decision, the 3d DCA reasoned: "The fatal flaw in the present case has already been described: Paragraph 7(b) of the proposal purports to require Ms. Brunner’s counsel to agree not only to assure that counsel’s own legal claims to the settlement funds are extinguished, butalso to assure that counsel will satisfy and extinguish 'other claims of thirdparties.' Yet there is no signature block or other provision to indicate her
attorney’s agreement to assume such an open-ended liability. A proposal must be  drafte…