Kissel v. Schwartz & Maines & Ruby Co et al.

When Kenton, Kentucky, Circuit Court Judge Martin Sheehan got word that a legal malpractice suit that was to be heard in his court had been settled before trial, it's safe to say he he was happy about it. Trust us: it's worth it to read his actual order to cancel the trial in its entirety:

The herein matter having been scheduled for a trial by jury commencing July 13, 2011, and numerous pre-trial motions having yet to be decided and remaining under submission;

And the parties having informed the Court that the herein matter has been settled amicably (the Court uses the word amicably loosely) and that there is no need for a Court ruling on the remaining motions and also that there is no need for a trial;

Such news of an amicable settlement having made this Court happier than a tick on a fat dog because it is otherwise busier than a one legged cat in a sand box and, quite frankly would have rather jumped naked off a twelve foot step ladder into a five gallon bucket of porcupines than have presided over a two week trial of the herein dispute, a trial which, no doubt would have made the jury more confused than a hungry baby in a topless bar and made the parties and their attorneys madder than mosquitoes in a mannequin factory;


1. The jury trial scheduled herein for July 13, 2011 is hereby CANCELLED.

2. Any and all pending motions will remain under submission pending the filing of an Agreed Judgment, Agreed Entry of Dismissal, or other pleadings consistent with the parties' settlement.

3. The copies of various correspondence submitted for in-camera review by the Defendant shall be sealed by the Clerk until further orders of the Court.

4. The Clerk shall engage the services of a structural engineer to ascertain if the return of this file to the Clerk's office will exceed the maximum structural load of the floors of said office.

Dated this 19 day of July, 2011.

MARTIN J. SHEEHAN Kenton Circuit Judge

The order quickly went viral online, which, the judge said, "is a sad comment on the legal profession. A judge puts a little humor in the judicial opinion, and it goes viral." He said he often adds wit, sarcasm and pop culture references to make a point.

The lawyers in the suit refused to comment on the order.

The plaintiff, Barbara Kissel, sued the law firm Schwartz Manes Ruby & Slovin, and two other lawyers, claiming that she was not properly represented in a dispute.

Posted August 8, 2011

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