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Order striking Plaintiff’s proposal for settlement affirmed on appeal.

Sharon C. Degnan, Laurie J. Adams and Melonie Bueno | July 29, 2015

Sharon Degnan, of the Ft. Lauderdale office, obtained a per curiam affirmance from the Fifth District of a trial court’s order striking a Plaintiff’s proposal for settlement. At the trial level, Laurie Adams and Melonie Bueno, of the West Palm Beach office, had successfully moved to strike Plaintiff’s proposal, arguing it could not serve as a basis for awarding Plaintiff attorney’s fees, as it was impermissibly ambiguous. Sharon successfully defended the appeal. She argued the trial court correctly held the proposal was fatally ambiguous because, for example, it said in one paragraph it would extinguish all claims "in the complaint," whereas another paragraph said it would extinguish "all claims." Sharon successfully argued that this rendered the proposal invalid, as it was unclear whether acceptance of the proposal would prevent Plaintiff from later bringing a purported bad faith case based on Plaintiff’s previously-filed CRN, which had already expired. After a persuasive brief and oral argument, the Fifth District affirmed the trial court’s order striking the Plaintiff’s proposal and holding it invalid as a basis for attorney’s fees.

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