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Merck Resolves Investors’ Class Action Lawsuit Related To Vioxx

In 2004, Merck pulled its painkiller, Vioxx, from the market after a study linked the drug to increased risks for heart attack and strokes. On Friday, January 15, 2016, Merck announced that it had agreed to pay $830 million...more

SEC Charges IA With Fraud Tied To Conflicts, Undisclosed Interest

Undisclosed conflicts by investment advisers and others is a focus of the current SEC enforcement program. In its most recent action, the conflicts came from a firm with an indirect, undisclosed controlling interest in the...more

Financial Services Weekly News - December 2015

Regulatory Developments - SEC Grants Exemption from Registration as a Clearing Agency to Two Matching Service Providers - On Nov. 24 the SEC approved applications by Bloomberg STP LLC and SS&C Technologies, Inc....more

SEC Sees Surges in Tips and Claims in Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Program

The SEC’s fiscal year ended on September 30, 2015, and the 2015 Annual Report on the Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Program was issued Monday. According to the report, the SEC saw another surge in whistleblower tips and paid out...more

SEC Settles Insider Trading Case With Admissions

A critical question in insider trading cases currently being brought is whether there are sufficient facts to comply with the Newman personal benefit test – at least if the case is in the Second Circuit. While in many...more

Financial Services Quarterly Report - Third Quarter 2015: Recent Developments in U.S. “Excessive Fee” Litigation

The U.S. mutual fund industry is poised to see significant developments in the ongoing wave of Section 36(b) “excessive fee” litigation. Days apart in August, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the grant of summary...more

Mannix v. PlasmaNet, Inc., C.A. No. 10502-CB (Del. Ch. July 21, 2015) (Bouchard, C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery granted a motion to dismiss and approved a settlement whereby certain former stockholders would dismiss their appraisal demands in exchange for shares of the surviving...more

Court Of Chancery Grants Stay Of Derivative Case

A stay of derivative litigation is hard to get even when there is another case pending elsewhere. But when, as here, the other litigation may expose the company to significant liability, a stay of the derivative action...more

Court Of Chancery Explains Unfair Dealing Law In Cash-Out Case

Aside from the very large damage award, this decision should be noted for its thorough analysis of the duties of a controlling stockholder and his aides in the way they act to carry out a going private transaction....more

Optimizing Damages Adjustments In Securities Class Actions

Because most securities class actions settle, the statutory limitations on damages that plaintiffs are allowed to recover following a favorable verdict are often overlooked. Those limitations, however, can be surprisingly...more

Bridging the Week - August 2015 #3

Hackers and Traders Charged by SEC and Department of Justice in International Securities Fraud Scheme - The computer servers of three major newswire companies were allegedly hacked as part of an elaborate illicit...more

Hill Int’l, Inc. v. Opportunity Partners L.P., No. 305, 2015 (Del. July 2, 2015)

In this opinion, the Delaware Supreme Court affirmed the Court of Chancery’s entry of an injunction, barring appellants Hill International, Inc.’s (“Hill”) from conducting any business at its June 9, 2015 Annual Meeting,...more

Third Circuit Opinion Raises Uncertainty for the Ordinary Business Exclusion in Shareholder Proposals

On July 6, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit issued its opinion in Trinity Wall Street v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. The holding permitted Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. ("Wal-Mart") to exclude a shareholder proposal...more

Delaware Supreme Court Reinforces Importance of Clear and Precise Bylaw Provisions and Specifically Drafted Notices of Annual...

In Hill International, Inc. v. Opportunity Partners L.P., No. 305, 2015, 2015 WL 4035069 (Del. July 2, 2015), the Delaware Supreme Court affirmed the Court of Chancery’s grant of injunctive relief as it recognized the...more

Delaware Supreme Court Reinforces Importance of Clear and Precise Bylaw Provisions and Specifically Drafted Notices of Annual...

In Hill International, Inc. v. Opportunity Partners L.P., No. 305, 2015, 2015 WL 4035069 (Del. July 2, 2015), the Delaware Supreme Court affirmed the Court of Chancery’s grant of injunctive relief as it recognized the...more

Friedman v. Dolan, C.A. No. 9425-VCN (Del. Ch. June 30, 2015) (Noble, V.C.)

In this letter opinion, the Court of Chancery dismissed claims for breach of fiduciary duty and waste under Chancery Rule 12(b)(6), holding that the business judgment rule, rather than entire fairness review, applied to...more

SEC Announces Third-Largest Dodd-Frank Bounty Award

Whistleblowers continue to reap extraordinary awards under Dodd-Frank’s “bounty” program in exchange for bringing the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) “original” information that leads to a successful enforcement...more

Issuers Apprehensive of OSC’s Proposed Whistleblower Program

The public comments on the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC)’s proposed whistleblower program (Program) evidence considerable concern that the Program could undermine issuers’ internal reporting and compliance programs,...more

Exculpatory Provisions Provide Powerful Protection for Independent Directors

The Delaware Supreme Court recently issued an important decision clarifying the standards that govern claims for money damages against independent directors of corporations whose charters contain exculpatory provisions....more

Court Of Chancery Awards Loser Fees

After years of litigating a breach of fiduciary duty case, the plaintiff won the battle but lost the war when the Court held that the defendants had breached their duties but there were no damages....more

Interpreting The Right To Specific Performance In A Shareholder Buy-Sell Agreement

I've never thought very hard about the remedy of specific performance. That means ordering a party to a contract to perform its contractual obligations. But the ability of the Court to order specific performance was...more

Whistleblower Compliance Officer Receives $1.4 Million Award from SEC

On April 22, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced an award of between $1.4 million and $1.6 million given to a compliance officer who alerted authorities to wrongdoing within a large company. Because of...more

SEC Whistleblower Is Second Compliance Officer to Receive Award

On April 22, 2015, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued its second whistleblower award to an employee with internal audit or compliance responsibilities. The recipient of the award is a compliance...more

Delaware Chancery Awards Investors $171 Million

On April 20, 2015, the Delaware Court of Chancery issued a decision awarding $171 million in damages to the common unitholders of a limited partnership against its general partner in connection with a “dropdown” transaction. ...more

Third Circuit Lets Wal-Mart Exclude Firearms Proposal Under the “Ordinary Business Operations” Exception

On April 14, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit summarily reversed a troubling decision of the Federal District Court in Delaware that required Wal-Mart to include in its 2015 proxy materials a shareholder...more

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