Robert W. Coleman Of Counsel





  • Texas Supreme Court Clarifies Law Regarding Auditors' Liability to Third Parties

    September 2010

    The Texas Supreme Court has strengthened defenses available to auditors in suits brought by third parties for negligent misrepresentation and fraud. In Grant Thornton LLP v. Prospect High Income Fund, et al., the court overruled what had been a broader standard for establishing liability in negligent misrepresentations. The ruling also sets new limitations on "holder" claims, wherein investors contend they were put at a disadvantage because they held securities they otherwise would have sold – based on an auditor's report. The decision is good news for accountants, who are potential targets in litigation stemming from the financial failings of their clients.
  • Broad application of in pari delicto defense results in summary judgments for Grant Thornton in Parmalat case

    November 2009

    An old defense to claims brought by clients and former clients has been renewed and given broad application to end litigation against affiliates of the former client’s auditors.  U.S. District Judge for the Southern District of New York Lewis Kaplan ruled, on September 18, 2009, that all claims brought by the plaintiffs, Dr. Enrico Bondi, ("Bondi"), the Extraordinary Commissioner of Parmalat Finanziaria, S.p.A., Parmalat S.p.A., and their affiliates (jointly "Parmalat") in Italian reorganization proceedings, and Parmalat Capital Finance Limited, a subsidiary of Parmalat ("PCFL"), against defendants Grant Thornton International ("GTI") and Grant Thornton LLP ("GT-US") were barred under the in pari delicto defense.

Additional Publications

Co-author, Accountant Liability, Texas Bar CLE, seminar paper, August 2004
"Supreme Relief: Texas High Court Announces New Statute of Limitations Rule for Accountants," Today's CPA, July/August 1998

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