Civil Procedure Business Organization Mergers & Acquisitions

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Obligations Under Earn-Outs Are Limited to What the Words Say

The stockholders of Cyveillance, Inc., sold their company for $40 million up-front and a $40 million earn-out if the company’s revenues reached a certain level. Section 5.4 of the merger agreement prohibited the buyer from...more

Fundamental Changes to Take-over Bid Regime One Step Closer With Release of Draft Amendments

On March 31, 2015, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) released draft amendments to Canada’s take over bid regulatory regime. As previously announced by the CSA in September 2014, the amendments will increase the...more

Ellis v. OTLP GP, LLC, C.A. No. 10495-VCN (Del. Ch. Jan. 30, 2015) (Noble, V.C.)

In this letter opinion, the Court of Chancery denied plaintiffs’ motion to expedite certain contractual claims arising from the sale of a limited partnership after finding that the claims were not colorable. Plaintiffs were...more

Lewis v. Aimco Properties, L.P, et al., C.A. No. 9934-VCP (Del. Ch. Feb. 10, 2015) (Parsons, V.C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery (i) granted in part certain defendants’ motion to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, specifically ordering a stay pending arbitration; and (ii) granted certain...more

Proposed 2015 Amendments to the Delaware General Corporation Law

The Delaware Corporation Law Council—composed of members of the Delaware bar charged with proposing annual amendments to the Delaware General Corporation Law (DGCL)—has proposed several potentially significant amendments to...more

"Proposed DGCL Amendments to Address Fee Shifting, Forum Selection and Appraisal Proceedings"

On March 6, 2015, the Corporation Law Council of the Delaware State Bar Association announced proposed amendments to the Delaware General Corporation Law (DGCL) intended to address fee shifting, forum selection and appraisal...more

Court Of Chancery Limits Drag-Along Rights

Whether drag-along rights can preclude an appraisal action for common stock has not been decided in Delaware. Here, because the merger was completed before the drag-along rights were asserted, the Court did not have to...more

It's Not Just A Delaware Thing: Other Courts Are Also Questioning Disclosure-Only Settlements In M&A Litigation

In an age when overburdened courts with reduced budgets often approve class action settlements without significant oversight, Delaware courts have frequently bucked that trend in the merger litigation context: rejecting...more

A Mixed Cause of Action with Protected and Non-Protected Activity Not Subject to Anti-SLAPP Motion

In Baral v. Schnitt (filed 2/5/2015, No. B253620), the California Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, held that California’s anti-SLAPP statute does not authorize the striking of allegations of protected activity in a...more

In re Kinder Morgan, Inc. Corporate Reorg. Litig., C.A. No. 10093-VCL (Del. Ch. Nov. 5, 2014) (Laster, V.C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery denied plaintiffs’ motion for a preliminary injunction and held that a provision in a partnership agreement imposing a higher voting threshold with respect to certain mergers...more

Delaware Court of Chancery Upholds Forum Selection Bylaw That Chose a Non-Delaware Forum Against Facial and As-Applied Challenges

On September 8, 2014, Chancellor Andre G. Bouchard issued a notable decision in City of Providence v. First Citizens BancShares, Inc., upholding—as a matter of facial validity and on an "as-applied" basis at the motion to...more

Delaware Court of Chancery Upholds North Carolina "Exclusive Forum" Bylaw

In a closely-watched case with implications for corporations across the nation, Chancellor Andre Bouchard of the Delaware Court of Chancery has issued an opinion enforcing a forum-selection bylaw that requires intra-corporate...more

Recent Decision Confirms That Forum Selection Bylaws Are Best Considered on a Clear Day

“Exclusive forum” bylaws and charter provisions are a powerful tool for managing the risk of parallel corporate governance litigation against a company and its directors in multiple forums, allowing stockholders to bring such...more

Courts Differ on Enforceability of Unilaterally Adopted Forum Selection Bylaws

While forum selection bylaws have become increasingly popular with US public companies, courts in Delaware and Oregon recently came to opposite conclusions on whether such bylaws, when unilaterally adopted by a board of...more

In re El Paso Pipeline Partners, L.P. Derivative Litig., C.A. No. 7141-VCL (Del. Ch. Jun. 12, 2014) (Laster, V.C.)

In this memorandum opinion resolving cross-motions for summary judgment, the Court of Chancery dismissed in part claims challenging a drop-down sale governed by a limited partnership agreement that supplanted fiduciary duties...more

The Importance of Planning Joint Venture Exit Strategies

With the Miami real estate market making a resurgence, there is a new rush for companies to come together in a joint venture to acquire real estate and develop projects. With the excitement of a new deal, the joint venture...more

"Fee-Shifting Bylaws: The Current State of Play"

As previously reported, on May 8, 2014, the Delaware Supreme Court issued an opinion in ATP Tour, Inc. v. Deutscher Tennis Bund (German Tennis Federation), No. 534,2013 (Del. May 8, 2014), holding that fee-shifting provisions...more

It Depends On The Meaning Of The Word "With"

The contractual interpretation issue before the Business Court in Schultheis v. Hatteras Capital Investment Management, LLC, 2014 NCBC 23, turned on the meaning of the word "with." Well, actually on the phrase "entering into...more

A Shot In A Mug Of Beer May Not Be The Answer To This Exclusive Forum Bylaw Case

In March, Safeway and Albertsons announced that they had entered into a definitive merger agreement. As night follows day, litigation ensued. At least 12 class action complaints were filed by alleged stockholders of...more

Update: Landmark Decision By Delaware's High Court Affirms Deferential Business Judgment Review For Controlling Stockholder...

Last summer, in our post titled Protecting Your Business Judgment: Recent Developments in Delaware Law on M&A Deals Involving Controlling Stockholders, we alerted you that two trial courts in the nation’s leading forum for...more

In re Rural Metro Corp. S'holders Litig., C.A. No. 6350-VCL (Del. Ch. Mar. 7, 2014) (Laster, V.C.)

In this post-trial decision, the Court of Chancery held a financial advisor liable for aiding and abetting breaches of fiduciary duty by a target board in the sale of the company. The Court concluded that the financial...more

Kahn v. MF Worldwide Corp. The Delaware Supreme Court Affirms In re MFW Holding That a Going-Private Transaction May Gain the...

On March 14, 2014, the Delaware Supreme Court decided Kahn v. MF Worldwide Corp. and unanimously affirmed the Chancery Court’s ruling in In re MFW. As we discussed previously, in In re MFW, then-Chancellor (now Chief Justice)...more

Delaware Supreme Court Affirms Criteria for Applying the Business Judgment Rule to Controlling Stockholder Going-Private...

In Kahn, et al. v. M & F Worldwide Corp., et al., 2014 WL 996270 (Del. Mar. 14, 2014), the Delaware Supreme Court unanimously affirmed that, when certain procedural safeguards are implemented at the outset of negotiations, a...more

M&F Worldwide: Delaware Supreme Court Upholds Business Judgment Review In Controlling Stockholder Transaction

When a controlling stockholder’s buyout of a company has been challenged by minority stockholders, Delaware courts have generally subjected the transaction to entire fairness review, the most rigorous standard of review in...more

The Impact of Kahn v. M&F Worldwide Corp.: Delaware Supreme Court Affirms That Business Judgment Review Applies to Properly...

In Kahn v. M&F Worldwide Corp., the Delaware Supreme Court unanimously affirmed the Court of Chancery’s decision that the more deferential business judgment rule standard of review, rather than an entire fairness standard of...more

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