State ex rel. Discover Fin. Servs., Inc. v. Circuit Court (Signed Opinion)Annotate this Case
This matter involved two consolidated writs of prohibition filed under the original jurisdiction of the Supreme Court. Petitioners sought a writ of prohibition to prevent enforcement of circuit court orders that denied their motions to disqualify private attorneys from representing the State as special assistant attorneys general, contending that the fee arrangements of the special assistant attorneys general violated the West Virginia Governmental Ethics Act and the West Virginia Rules of Professional Conduct and that the attorney general lacked the authority to appoint special assistant attorneys general. The Supreme Court denied the writs, holding (1) Petitioners failed to establish that the special assistant attorneys general actually engaged in any improper conduct that caused an injury; (2) the Court improperly held in Manchin v. Browning, which was heretofore overruled, that the office of attorney general did not retain inherent common law powers; and (3) while the circuit courts relied on the wrong reasons for rejecting the motions to disqualify the special assistant attorneys general, those courts nevertheless were correct in denying the motions.