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Conflict of Interest Causes Attorney to Withdraw from Estate Case

Just five days after Breen was shot, attorneys working for Kacie Breen filed a motion in state district court in Covington to appoint an attorney to try to find Wayne Breen's will. The court appointed Alan Black to search for the will. Five days after that, a different attorney filed a motion to disqualify the lawyers representing Kacie Breen. The allegation was that the firm - Talley, Anthony, Hughes and Knight, of Covington - had a conflict. One of the firm's partners, Chuck Hughes, also provides legal counsel to the St. Tammany Sheriff's Office, which is investigating Breen's death.

Five days after shooting her husband, Kaci Breen filed a petition with the probate court to have an attorney appointed to find her husband's latest will. Attached to the motion was an older will that named Kaci as the executor of the estate.

There is apparently no dispute that Kaci Breen shot her husband, Wayne, in the chest twice. Whether that makes Kaci guilty of murder is the subject of an ongoing sheriff's investigation.

Of course, it should go without saying that if Kaci is convicted of murder, she cannot have anything to do with her husband's estate.

A few days later another attorney, representing the grown children, filed a motion to have Kaci's attorney removed from the case due to a conflict of interest.

Why?

It turns out that her attorney's firm has a close relationship with the very sheriff's department that is investigating the possible murder. Kaci's attorney submitted a long response in opposition, but did withdraw from the case.

Intrigued?

The New Orleans Advocate has more to read on the story in an article titled "Legal battle begins over slain doctor's estate."

Obviously, a lot is going on in this estate case and it is far too early to speculate on how the estate will eventually be divided. The key point right now is that an attorney can be removed from an estate case if that attorney has a conflict of interest.

Here the conflict arose because the firm representing Kaci had an ongoing legal relationship with the same sheriff's department investigating potential murder charges against her, and the results of that investigation will have a dramatic impact on the estate.

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