The court granted plaintiff's motion to disqualify Howrey as defense counsel even though another court denied a parallel motion in a case involving the same parties and counsel. "Judge Robinson held that even though there was a violation of Rule 1.7 of the American Bar Association’s Model Rules of Professional Conduct (“Rule 1.7"), disqualification of Howry as counsel for [defendant] was not appropriate because Howry’s ethical screen was a sufficient measure to deal with the violation in the District of Delaware." Applying New Jersey law, the court held that a violation of the rule required disqualification. "Given the violation of Rule 1.7, this Court finds that disqualification is appropriate here. The Court therefore need not engage in an analysis of whether [plaintiff's] alleged 'obfuscatory' conduct in causing the conflict of interest justifies disqualification."
Wyeth et al. v. Abbott Laboratories et al., 3-08-cv-00230
(NJD December 1, 2009, Letter Order) (Bongiovanni, M.J.)