United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania
D. MARIANI, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter involves claims asserted by Plaintiff, Dana
Tamberelli, arising out of the termination of her employment
with Alkermes, Inc., in 2015. (Doc. 21). On June 5, 2017, a
purported settlement was reached through negotiations between
one of Plaintiffs attorneys, David Deratzian, and one of
Defendants' attorneys, Barbara Rigo. Plaintiff, however,
denies every authorizing Deratzian to accept the proposed
settlement offer. As a result, Defendants have filed a Motion
to Enforce Settlement. (Doc. 31). Soon thereafter, Plaintiffs
attorneys, through Attorney George Kounoupis, filed a Motion
seeking to withdraw as counsel and to intervene in this case.
(Docs. 33 & 34). On July 5, 2017, this Court granted the
Motion to Withdraw, stayed the matter to allow Plaintiff an
opportunity to find new counsel, and ordered Kounoupis to
brief his Motion to Intervene. (Doc. 38). Kounoupis filed his
brief in support of his Motion on July 7, 2017. (Doc. 39).
Plaintiff subsequently obtained new counsel, and they have
now briefed her opposition to Kounoupis's Motion. (Doc.
51). Upon review of the parties' filings, and for the
reasons that follow, the Court will deny Kounoupis's
Motion to Intervene.
10, 2015, Plaintiff was allegedly terminated from her
employment for unlawful reasons. (Doc. 21 at ¶ 45).
Sometime in late July or early August of that year, Plaintiff
retained the firm of Hahalis & Kounoupis, PC, to
represent her on claims arising out of her termination. (Doc.
34 at ¶ 2; Doc. 35 at ¶ 2). Plaintiff signed a fee
agreement with Hahalis & Kounoupis, on August 6, 2015.
(Doc. 33 at 8-9). Although Kounoupis was the only attorney
who entered his appearance on Plaintiff's behalf, another
attorney at the firm, Deratzian, was assigned Plaintiff's
file. (Doc. 34 at ¶ 3; Doc. 35 at ¶ 3).
5, 2017, Plaintiff met with Deratzian at his office to
prepare for her deposition that was scheduled for June 6,
2017. (Aff. of Dana Tamberelli, Doc. 52 at ¶¶ 6,
10; Aff. of David Deratzian, Doc. 31-3 at ¶¶ 6-7).
Although exactly what transpired next is disputed, the
parties appear to agree that Deratzian, outside of Plaintiffs
presence, placed several phone calls with one of
Defendants' attorneys, Barbara Rigo, and engaged in
settlement negations. (Aff. of Dana Tamberelli, Doc. 52 at
¶ 23; Aff. of David Deratzian, Doc. 31-3 at ¶¶
5-7). Deratzian asserts that he, with express authority from
Plaintiff to do so, accepted a settlement offer during his
third phone call with Rigo. (Aff. of David Deratzian, Doc.
31-3 at ¶¶ 8-9). Plaintiff asserts that she
unequivocally rejected the three settlement offers that
Deratzian brought to her and that she never authorized anyone
to settle her case. (Aff. of Dana Tamberelli, Doc. 52 at
¶¶ 21-24, 32). According to Plaintiff, she left the
office after rejecting the third offer, and was informed by
one of Defendants' attorney that the case had settled
when Plaintiff arrived at their office the next day to be
deposed, (Id. at ¶¶ 23-24, 27).
15, 2017, Plaintiff discharged her attorneys at Hahalis &
Kounoupis, PC. (Doc. 34 at ¶ 16; Doc. 35 at ¶ 16).
Not long after, Defendants filed a Motion to Enforce
Settlement. (Doc. 31). Kounoupis's Motion to Intervene
soon followed. (Docs. 33, 34).
Rule of Civil Procedure 24 governs a nonparty's right to
intervene in litigation. The Rule provides, in pertinent
part, as follows:
(a) Intervention of Right. On timely motion,
the court must permit anyone to intervene who:
(1) is given an unconditional right to intervene by a federal
(2) claims an interest relating to the property or
transaction that is the subject of the action, and is so
situated that disposing of the action may as a practical
matter impair or impede the movant's ability to protect
its interest, unless existing parties adequately represent
(b) Permissive Intervention.
(1) In General. On timely motion,
the court may permit anyone to ...