Interesting Developments In Inheritance Laws

My practice is limited to trials involving inheritance disputes including will contest, related property disputes and associated torts. To ask privately about a Texas litigation issue involving an inheritance dispute, click the big red button to go to our main site's contact page and ask a question privately.

What damages are available for breach of a fiduciary duty?

The Texas Supreme Court decided a case in 2010 that answered the question of fee disgorgement. In the case, two business partners decided that one partner would sell his interest to the other partner. Partners are fiduciaries to the other partners. They also signed a non-compete clause so that the selling partner could not go into a business to compete with the remaining partner. The facts showed that before the sale, the selling partner’s wife had formed a new corporation that was going to and did compete with the old partnership. The trial court said that the selling partner breached his fiduciary duty and had to disgorge (pay back) the money that he had received for the sale of the partnership. The Court of Appeals reversed. It said that although there was a breach of fiduciary duty, the contract payment was for the selling partner’s interest in the business rather than a fee. It ruled that only a fee could be disgorged.

In reversing the Court of Appeals, the Supreme Court said that where there is no fee, the court can fashion a remedy, in this case disgorgement of the contract price, for  breach of fiduciary duty. A fee is not required. If it were, there would be no remedy for a breach of fiduciary duty in non fee cases. NO. 07-1042.

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We handle litigation involving inheritance disputes. We don't prepare wills. We handle a select few cases on contingency. Don't use a comment to ask a personal question about an inheritance issue because your name and comment will be public. To ask a litigation question and to protect your privacy, click the red button to the right.

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