Ex-Debevoise employee strikes back with counterclaim

Solicitor Joan Leopold has filed a counterclaim to US firm Debevoise & Plimpton’s claim against her, which relates to work she undertook for the firm in 2007.

As reported by The Lawyer (19 January) Debevoise alleges ;that ;Leopold breached a confidentiality agreement concerning work she handled for the firm over a three-month period. Leopold ;worked ;on ;a ­temporary basis, carrying
out work relating to a ­confidential investigation.

In her counterclaim Leopold states that the firm did not actually sign the confidentiality agreement and as such cannot claim that the other signatories should be bound by it.

According to Debevoise’s claim, Leopold took and kept documents relating to the work, but Leopold’s counterclaim states that the firm cannot prove she took the paperwork intentionally.

The counterclaim adds that Leopold is a California-licensed attorney who had not relinquished her right to retain duplicates of client information, alleging that Debevoise knew this when it asked Leopold to sign the confidentiality agreement.

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