A legal malpractice suit against Pratt & Tobin P.C. has been semi-halted until the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Committee of the Supreme Court of Illinois (ARDC) resolves its own investigation into the plaintiff's complaint against members of the firm.
Madison County Circuit Judge Andreas Matoesian heard arguments on the motion to stay Thursday morning.
Matoesian took up the motion to stay first instead of motions for sanctions filed by plaintiff Jesse Berry.
Berry is suing attorney Gregory Tobin and the Tobin firm for damages in excess of $400,000 and other relief.
He claims that the Tobin firm never filed a Federal Employers Liability Act lawsuit as promised and that the firm's alleged negligence led to the dismissal of the suit despite attempts by other attorneys to re-file and litigate it.
The ARDC is currently investigating the matter as well.
The defendants asked Matoesian to stay the case pending the outcome of the investigation and until a case management order could be hammered out.
Defense counsel Robert Shultz also pointed to the roles that witnesses the plaintiff wished to depose played in the ARDC investigation.
Matoesian questioned attorneys at points in the Thursday hearing about the ARDC investigation and its impact on the civil suit.
Matoesian told the attorneys present that he would stay the depositions in the case but that they were to confer and "hammer out" a discovery schedule for other production.
Shultz and others represent the defendants.
Robert Owen represents Berry.
The case is Madison case number 09-L-422.