Man sues attorney to recover funds from divorce

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Nov. 28, 2011, 8:51am

GALVESTON - Frederick W. Fournier seeks to have a local state district judge compel a Friendswood attorney to release funds he accumulated during previous divorce proceedings, recent court documents say.

Fournier's lawsuit requests Galveston County 10th District Court Judge David Garner grant a temporary restraining order barring defendant Kevin M. Prendergast from withholding $70,250.

Court papers, which were filed Nov. 16, state the plaintiff hired Prendergast to represent him in his divorce from his wife, Michele, in the Harris County 309th District Court.

It was during the pendency of the divorce when Fournier sold and closed on a home he owned in the same county.

The proceeds from the transaction were sent to his spouse, who then delivered the entire amount to her attorney for safekeeping awaiting the disposition of the case.

The original petition shows the litigants obtained a court order calling for one-half of the funds that lawyer Anson Phipps was holding to be allocated to Prendergast.

The divorce suit was dismissed for want of prosecution and has been reinstated though the complainant and his wife are trying to reconcile, however, the defendant failed and refused to pay Fournier the money in dispute, the suit says.

Fournier adds "the respondent has now blocked the plaintiff's calls and has refused to talk with the plaintiff, and has been and continues to be evasive."

In addition to the amount in question, he seeks the defendant's disbarment.

Attorney C. Michael Matkin of Spring is representing the plaintiff.

Case No. 11-cv-1802

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