LFDS recognized in the Verdicts Hall of Fame for an $8 Billion winning verdict
In 2020, Loewinsohn Flegle Deary Simon was selected to Texas Lawyer’s Texas Verdicts Hall of Fame with the #1 Fraud/Professional Negligence Verdict. The case, Jo N. Hopper V. JP Morgan Chase Bank was an $8 billion winning verdict. The case lasted 4 weeks with Alan Loewinsohn, Kerry Schonwald and Jim Flegle representing the client.
In 2011, a dispute arose between plaintiff Jo N. Hopper, 70, her adult stepchildren, Stephen B. Hopper and Laura S. Wassmer, and JPMorgan Chase Bank N.A. over the distribution of interests in a house in Dallas and personal property belonging to the community estate of Jo Hopper and her late husband, Max D. Hopper. The house was on Robledo Drive and was where Jo and Max lived until his death. The total value of the community estate was about $26 million at the time of Max Hopper's death. Max Hopper died intestate of a sudden stroke on Jan. 25, 2010. On June 30, 2010, the family selected JPMorgan as independent administrator of the decedent's estate.
The only claims at trial were Jo's claims against JPMorgan for breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty and money had and received; Stephen's and Laura's claims against JPMorgan, on behalf of themselves and the estate, for negligence, breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, fraud, conversion and money had and received; a claim by Jo against JPMorgan for attorney fees in connection with declaratory judgment actions; a claim by Jo against her stepchildren for attorney fees; and claims by JPMorgan against Stephen and Laura for attorney fees. Several claims were nonsuited before trial. They included Jo's action to remove JPMorgan as administrator; her claims against JPMorgan for fraud and violation of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act; her claims against her stepchildren and Quagmire for aiding and abetting a breach of fiduciary duty; and the stepchildren's counterclaims against Jo for fraud and breach of fiduciary duty. The jury found breach of fiduciary duty, breach of contract, fraud, negligence (with 90 percent comparative responsibility), conversion, gross negligence and malice by JPMorgan. It also found that JPMorgan held funds that in equity and good conscience belonged to Jo Hopper and the estate.
The jury found negligence and comparative responsibility of 10 percent on the part of Gary Stolbach and Glast, Philips & Murray. Post trial, Jo filed a motion regarding attorney fees. JPMorgan filed a motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict and, alternatively, a motion to disregard jury findings or suggestion of remittitur. Stephen and Laura filed a motion for judgment.