Energy company sues Quinn Emanuel for $250 mln over court loss to UBS

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Natural gas flares are seen at an oil pump site outside of Williston, North Dakota March 11, 2013. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

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(Reuters) - The parent company of two oil and gas producers is seeking $250 million in damages from Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, alleging the law firm botched its handling of a federal lawsuit two years ago that led to a $136 million loss.

GIT Inc, formerly known as Greka Integrated Inc, said in a lawsuit filed Thursday in New York County Supreme Court that Quinn Emanuel was negligent in its defense of a lawsuit filed by UBS AG.

UBS's London Branch sued GIT after two of its affiliates, HVI Cat Canyon Inc and Rincon Island Limited Partnership, borrowed $100 million but allegedly never made any payments. UBS won a summary judgment against GIT in Manhattan federal court in April 2020; shortly after, Quinn Emanuel withdrew as GIT's counsel.

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Although they are not named individually as defendants in its malpractice lawsuit, GIT said its attorneys included Peter Calamari, Quinn Emanuel's former managing partner, and Patty Tomasco, a bankruptcy partner.

Quinn Emanuel in a statement said GIT's lawsuit is frivolous. The firm said that an arbitrator last month ordered GIT to pay it $958,000 in legal fees, and that the lawsuit "attempts to resurrect allegations that GIT had dropped during arbitration."

"Quinn Emanuel will defend itself against these meritless claims and seek sanctions if necessary," the firm said.

Calamari, who left Quinn Emanuel in January, said he had no comment. A UBS representative could not immediately be reached for comment.

Eric Berry, a New York attorney representing GIT, declined to comment.

GIT claims Quinn Emanuel was negligent in its representation, failing to raise certain defenses against UBS's federal lawsuit as well as failing to prosecute its own claims of fraudulent inducement against UBS.

Then-U.S. District Judge Louis Stanton dismissed GIT's fraudulent inducement claims, writing in April 2020 "there is no genuine issue as to whether GIT was fraudulently induced into executing the guaranties; it was not."

The case is GIT Inc v. Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP, New York County Supreme Court, Index No. Unassigned

For GIT Inc: Eric Berry of Berry Law

(Updated with statement from Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan)

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David Thomas reports on the business of law, including law firm strategy, hiring, mergers and litigation. He is based out of Chicago. He can be reached at and on Twitter @DaveThomas5150.