Citing his long-time friendship with both parties in a feud between former law partners, Madison County Circuit Judge Daniel Stack has recused himself from a case brought by Glenn Bradford against John Barberis.
That pushed off a hearing on a motion for interpleader filed by Bradford that would have put more than $500,000 he earned from the class action settlement of Big Sky vs. AT&T into the hands of the Circuit Clerk's office.
The hearing on the matter had been set last Friday.
It has yet to be reset by newly presiding judge, Madison County Circuit Judge Dennis Ruth.
Bradford is suing Barberis for allegedly failing to live up to the terms of the law partnership agreement they signed in February 2001.
Bradford claims his former law partner did not bill the hours he agreed to and that he was never in the their office.
The partnership of Barberis & Bradford dissolved in August.
Bradford seeks damages including the payment of Barberis's share of their debts.
He also asks the court to deny Barberis any part of the $559,333.33 Bradford earned as part of the legal team representing a class of businesses that claimed they were gypped out of legally ordered refunds paid by AT&T.
That case, led by Big Sky Excavating, settled earlier this year.
The settlement, which netted Bradford and the other plaintiffs'
attorneys more than $7 million in fees, was approved by Stack in July.
In his Sept. 20 order, Stack writes that he was unhappy his two friends were now before him in court.
"This judge is somewhat familiar with this case and has been a long time friend of both parties and counsel for the plaintiff," Stack wrote. "It is with regret to both parties that for those reasons this judge must recuse himself from this case."
D. Jeffrey Ezra represents Bradford.
No attorney is listed as representing Barberis.
Barberis has not filed his answer to his former partner's suit to date.
The case is Madison case number 10-L-939.