A New York judge has ruled that four of the five name partners of now-defunct plaintiffs firm Silverman, Harnes, Harnes, Prussin & Keller were not equity partners and were not entitled to share in a $3.2 million class action fee received by the firm’s sole equity partner, Sidney B. Silverman.

In determining that Joan T. Harnes, John F. Harnes, H. Adam Prussin and Gregory E. Keller were not partners, Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Richard B. Lowe said that, in the absence of a written partnership agreement, their badges of partnership were outweighed by other evidence indicating they were mere employees.