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STEPHEN RAGO v. ANNA L. NACE (05/13/83)

filed: May 13, 1983.

STEPHEN RAGO, JR.
v.
ANNA L. NACE, APPELLANT



No. 71 Philadelphia, 1982, Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Lehigh County, Civil Division, at No. 377 January Term, 1970

COUNSEL

Mark S. Sigmon, Bethlehem, for appellant.

John Peter Karoly, Jr., Allentown, for appellee.

Brosky, Wieand and Cirillo, JJ. Wieand, J., did not participate in the consideration or decision of this case.

Author: Brosky

[ 313 Pa. Super. Page 576]

This appeal is from the denial of a petition to set aside a settlement. Appellant raises three issues: 1) Whether the court below could direct a verdict for plaintiff without any action on the part of the jury. 2) Whether the counsel for the defendant had the authority to bind the defendant to a settlement agreement without the express authority and understanding of the defendant. 3) Whether the settlement agreement constituted an unexecuted accord which is unenforceable. We affirm.

Issues 1) and 3), above, were not raised below in appellant's petition to set aside the settlement. They are, therefore, waived for purposes of appellate treatment. Pa.R.A.P. 302(a).

The only issue remaining for our consideration is number 2), above: whether counsel for defendant had the authority to bind the defendant to a settlement agreement without the express authority and understanding of the defendant. Of course, counsel cannot agree for his client to a settlement without his client's authorization. However, we fail to see the applicability of that legal maxim to the case before us. Appellant's trial counsel did not bind her to the settlement agreement; appellant herself did so in open

[ 313 Pa. Super. Page 577]

    court. The trial court recited to appellant the terms of the settlement agreement and appellant evinced her agreement.

THE COURT: It is my understanding that the parties have worked very diligently and hard here to arrive at a settlement, and the Court appreciates the efforts that were put into the parties reaching a settlement in this matter.

In light of the amounts that were going to be discussed about here, I think the parties have reached a fair settlement and done the right thing in this matter.

So, the Court will direct a verdict in this case in favor of the plaintiff Stephen Rago, Jr., and against the defendant, Anna L. Nace, in the sum of $31,800, said sum to be payable within 45 days of this date; no legal interest being due and payable on said amount within the first 20 days, and legal ...


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