A Extensive Island guy who was awarded a historic multi-million greenback verdict after fracturing his cranium a long time back is now duking it out with his previous law firm more than $5.5 million — for the reason that the attorney’s “greed is aware no bounds,” new court papers allege.
Mark Perez was sued past thirty day period by his ex-attorney Benedict Morelli — who promises he’s entitled to the $5.5 million in lawful charges, on major of the more than $18 million Perez has already paid out him, according to filings in Manhattan Supreme Court docket.
“I think that legal professionals ought to be paid out properly for their work, a individual like me demands them to combat for them but for Mr. Morelli to consider absent so much of the settlement, it just appears to be completely wrong,” Perez recently wrote to the judge that oversaw his personal injury demo.
Perez, 38, at first been given a $102 million jury verdict in 2019 right after suing Live Nation over a tumble six a long time previously that still left him with a broken skull and needing multiple brain surgeries. A forklift had crashed into a 10-foot tall booth Perez was doing work on, sending him plummeting at the Jones Beach front Maritime Theatre.
Perez and Morelli at first agreed that the noteworthy particular personal injury legal professional would get one particular-3rd of the award as a contingency cost. But when the verdict went to enchantment, Morelli regularly tried out to negotiate an further 10-per cent cost, though Perez sought to fork out the law firm an hourly amount, in accordance to Perez’s counterclaims to the suit Morelli submitted versus him final month.
Morelli stored operating the situation – even with Perez allegedly never ever signing an settlement more than the additional rate – and ultimately secured his client a $55 million settlement with Dwell Nation’s insurers exterior of the attractiveness court docket.
In the finish, Perez only been given about $28 million from the settlement. The $5.5 million is being held in an escrow account though Perez fights for its return, in addition to all of the costs he paid out Morelli.
“[Morelli] carries on to insist that he really should be paid out $5.5 million for the submit-demo and appellate get the job done (on leading of the $18,333,333.30 that Mr. Perez has previously paid in legal service fees), demonstrating that Morelli’s greed knows no bounds,” Perez’s countersuit alleges.
In the letter to the judge, dated Dec. 9, Perez included, “I am the 1 that lives with seizures, surgeries and the frequent panic of more medical troubles.
“I hope you are ready to assist me now by determining what need to be finished below. Thank you for listening to my trial. I’m wanting forward to going on and putting this final upsetting circumstance at the rear of me.”
Perez also claims Morelli set him in the center of a rate dispute with his first law firm – a distant relative – resulting in a rift in his household. And Perez alleges that Morelli didn’t notify him about quite a few prior settlement offers post demo.
On Thursday, Morelli requested a decide to toss Perez’ counterclaims versus him, arguing that he hardly ever agreed to Perez’s proposed hourly spend price for the appeal get the job done.
Morelli claimed that Perez “chose to continue to be silent,” about the further 10-p.c cost until finally the circumstance experienced wrapped and the settlement was secured.
“Mr. Perez approved the added benefits of the firm’s get the job done with regard to the enchantment, did not terminate the business, and did not check with the organization to prevent working on the issue,” Morelli’s lawyers wrote in the Thursday filing. “He selected to continue being silent while the business finished the enchantment and thus ratified the 10% fee arrangement.”
The aftermath of Perez’s fall on June 26, 2013 remaining him needing total-time care and brought about him to reduce his lengthy-phrase marriage, Morelli explained to The Submit soon following the verdict.
Lawyers on both sides declined to remark.