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30 ¦ DECEMBER 21, 2020                    CONNECTICUT OPINIONS

DISCOVERY • REAL ESTATE                                 alleging sexual discrimination, sexual harass-
                                                        ment, retaliation, and unlawful termination.
Court Denies Motion to Compel in Part                   Pursuant to CHRO procedures, the parties
Based on Attorney-Client Privilege                      participated in mediation with the CHRO. Sub-
                                                        sequent to the mediation, plaintiff requested
                                                        and received a release to bring suit, and there-
CASE: Bianco v. Denning                                 after filed suit against defendant, asserting the
COURT: Stamford/Norwalk J.D. at Stamford                same claims alleged in her complaint. Defen-
DOC. NO.: CV-20-6045111                                 dant moved to enforce a settlement agreement
COURT OPINION BY: Krumeich                              allegedly reached by the parties. Following an
DATE: November 25, 2020 • PAGES: 11
Plaintiff claimed they had a right-of-way to evidentiary hearing, the court concluded there
certain private roads over defendant’s property. was no settlement agreement. The court found
Defendants claimed three special defenses: the that following telephonic and emailed nego-
right-of-way was invalid because the issuing tiations with the mediator, defendant’s coun-
party had no legal right to the right-of-way; the sel communicated to the mediator defendant’s
right-of-way was abandoned; and that the need final best offer, which the mediator in turn
for the right-of-way was extinguished. Plain- communicated to plaintiff ’s counsel. Plaintiff ’s
tiffs delivered several interrogatories and docu-       counsel responded that he would communicate
ment requests to defendants, however defen-             the offer to plaintiff. Based on this exchange,
dants imposed objections based on attorney-             the mediator mistakenly concluded that a set-
client privilege. In response, plaintiffs moved         tlement had been reached and communicated
to compel defendants to respond. Plaintiffs             that belief to defendant’s attorney. Defen-
argued defendant waived attorney-client privi-          dant’s attorney prepared a written settlement
lege by voluntarily disclosing communications           agreement and forwarded it to plaintiff ’s coun-
from their counsel and the court granted the            sel. The agreement was significantly broader in
motion in part and denied in part. The court            scope than anything the parties had discussed
found that some of the documents requested              with the mediator. When plaintiff ’s attorney
pertained directly to the legal issues in question      discussed the settlement proposal with plain-
and were not intended to be shared; therefore,          tiff, she rejected it. Neither plaintiff nor her
attorney-client privilege protected the docu-           attorney ever signed the settlement agreement
ments from the motion. The court however                or communicated to defendant’s counsel that
found that other documents were not subject             plaintiff was willing to agree to its terms. On
to the privilege, and granted the motion as to          this record, the court found no meeting of the
those documents. The court also ordered that            minds between the parties and no enforceable
the documents protected by attorney-client              agreement.
privilege should be redacted and the redacted
copies should be produced to plaintiffs.
                                                        EMPLOYMENT LITIGATION •

DISPUTE RESOLUTION •                                    CONTRACTUAL DISPUTES

EMPLOYMENT LITIGATION                                   Automatic Contract Renewals Make

Plaintiff Never Agreed to Defendant’s §20-14p Enforceable Against Non-
Proposed Settlement                                     Compete Clause

CASE: Abreu v. New England Tractor Trailer Training of  CASE: Orthopaedic & Neurosurgery Specialists, PLLC v.
Conn., Inc.                                             COURT: of Stamford/Norwalk J.D. at Stamford
COURT: Fairfield J.D. at Bridgeport
DOC. NO.: CV-20-6100332                                 DOC. NO.: CV-19-6043113
                                                        COURT OPINION BY: Povodator
COURT OPINION BY: Cordani                               DATE: November 30, 2020 • PAGES: 21
DATE: November 27, 2020 • PAGES: 7
The court denied defendant’s motion to enforce Defendant was formerly employed by plaintiff ’s
a settlement agreement, finding no enforceable predecessor and had an employment contract
agreement between the parties. Plaintiff filed which included a non-compete provision, such
a complaint against defendant with the Com- that a terminated employee was prohibited from
mission on Human Rights and Opportunities, competing with the plaintiff within 20 miles of

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