Lockton v. O’Rourke (2010) 184 Cal.App.4th 1051

A sophisticated businessman hired GMSR’s clients to bring suit against various individuals and entities that he claimed had fraudulently settled litigation arising out of his ouster from a company that he founded. He hired a separate attorney to file a separate lawsuit against a law firm that allegedly had defamed him in the underlying litigation. The separate suit was dismissed as time-barred. He then sued GMSR’s clients, alleging they committed malpractice by failing to timely add the law firm defendant to the separate suit they were handling. The trial court found the action barred by the one-year statute of limitations for legal malpractice actions.

On appeal, GMSR successfully argued that “continuous representation” tolling did not apply even though GMSR’s clients had continued to represent the plaintiff within the one-year limitation period in the action they were handling. The appellate court agreed, affirming the judgment in favor of GMSR’s clients.

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