T.V. Executive Claims He Was “Stiffed” For $14 Million.
In Los Angeles County Superior Court, there is quite a battle going on between a T.V. executive and the Survivor mastermind’s former partner relating to compensation allegedly owed in connection with the T.V. Survivor series.
Briefly told, plaintiff T.V. executive sued the defendant former partner in Survivor for unpaid consulting services under a contract. Former consultant countersued on the theory that T.V. executive provided him legal, not nonlegal advice, under a contingency arrangement which could be ended “at will.”
Lots of proceedings, including dueling summary judgment motions by both sides, were at issue in this contentious case.
Recently, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Frederick Shaller ruled mainly in favor of T.V. executive, denying the defense motions and rejecting the idea that T.V. executive was rendering legal services given the contract labeled executive as an “independent contractor,” given no mention of legal services was made in the contract, and given that negotiation alone is not the practice of law. That means both sides are steaming to a trial, although the lower court did grant a stay so the defense could seek appellate review of some issues. More to come, we would predict.