Logourl black
From our private database of 13,000+ case briefs...

Kansallis Finance LTD v. Fern

Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court
659 N.E.2d 731 (1995)


Facts

Stephen Jones was a law partner in Fern, Anderson, Donahue, Jones & Sabatt, P.A. (Fern) (defendant). Jones issued a fraudulent opinion letter to Kansallis Finance Ltd. (Kansallis) (plaintiff) on Fern letterhead. Kansallis successfully sued Jones and his co-conspirators for $880,000 in damages, and Jones was criminally convicted. Kansallis sued Fern in the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts when it could not collect the damage award from Jones or the co-conspirators. The jury found that Jones did not act with apparent authority. The jury was instructed that Jones’ conduct was nevertheless within the scope of the partnership if it was (1) the type of conduct a law partner would engage in, (2) within the appropriate time and geographic scope of the partnership, and (3) “motivated at least in part by a purpose to serve the partnership.” The jury found that Jones did not act with apparent authority and Jones’ conduct did not satisfy the three-prong test. Kansallis appealed to the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. The appellate court affirmed the findings of fact and certified two questions to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, including whether intent to benefit the partnership was a requirement for partnership liability.

Rule of Law

The rule of law is the black letter law upon which the court rested its decision. To access this section, start your 7-day free trial of Quimbee for Law Students.

Issue

The issue section includes the dispositive legal issue in the case phrased as a question. To access this section, start your 7-day free trial of Quimbee for Law Students.

Holding and Reasoning (Fried, J.)

The holding and reasoning section includes:

  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

To access this section, start your 7-day free trial of Quimbee for Law Students.

What to do next…

  1. Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.

    You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.

  2. Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.

    Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.

Here's why 129,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:

  • Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 13,000 briefs, keyed to 177 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
  • The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
  • Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
  • Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.