Edge Ellison has won the battle to be sole legal adviser to Leicester City Football Club following a boardroom struggle that involved a number of regional rivals.
But the club is now facing a battle over who will pay the bills from the firms involved in the three-month battle.
In September four directors attempted to oust fellow board members Rodney Walker and John Elsom.
The coup threw Edge Ellison’s position as main adviser to the premiership club and plc into doubt.
The firm was forced to remain neutral while other firms moved in to carry out the necessary legal work, as the boardroom struggle continued.
Regional practices Gateley Wareing, Browne Jacobson and Freeth Cartwright Hunt Dickins, as well as niche London practice Glinert Davis, were all instructed by different directors and parts of the company.
Sources at Edge Ellison confirm the firm would not have been retained if the boardroom coup was successful.
Edge Ellison’s head of corporate David Hull says: “At the board meeting on the 10 September there were two alleged resignations. In the ensuing three months there was a great deal of uncertainty at the football club. People took advice but we had to remain impartial.”
An extraordinary general meeting declared the coup unlawful and the majority of the board has resigned.
But a legal battle is now looming over whether the club or individual directors are liable to pay the legal bills incurred during the battle.
One source close to the club explains: “There were questions raised that people were instructing lawyers and then charging it to the plc.”
Edge Ellison refuses to confirm if it is investigating the matter.
But another source is able to confirm that one of the directors is likely to pursue an individual claim against the firm.
The source says of Barrie Pierpoint: “He will have a claim. The other three directors resigned. He did not, he was removed.”
Gateley Wareing partner Craig Mitchell adds: “Our retainer is finished but I expect to work with Pierpoint again. He has indicated that he is willing to use us again.”
Leicester City Football Club has been a client of Edge Ellison since its flotation five years ago. The company has a market capitalisation of £20.8m.