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Editorial: 3rd DCA Clarifies Derivative Lawsuits

The Third District Court of Appeal has issued a landmark opinion setting forth Florida's law to determine the limited circumstances in which a corporate shareholder or limited liability company member has standing to bring a...more

The Fate of Delaware "Fee-Shifting" Bylaws

A topic of considerable controversy within the corporate community over the past two months has been the possibility of adopting a "fee-shifting" provision in the bylaws of Delaware corporations. Depending on how it is...more

Adoption of Fee-Shifting Bylaws by Pennsylvania Corporations

Recently, there has been some unusual excitement in the corporate bar in Delaware after the Supreme Court of Delaware held that a nonstock corporation could adopt a bylaw requiring a losing plaintiff in a lawsuit involving...more

When It Comes To Director Compensation Claims, Nevada And Delaware Are Fundamentally Different

Since 1969, there has no question that directors of a Delaware corporation have the authority to set their own compensation. 8 DGCL § 141(h). Having authority to do something, however, doesn’t mean that the use of that...more

Cambridge Ret. Sys. v. Bosnjak, C.A. No. 9178-CB (Del. Ch. June 26, 2014) (Bouchard, C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery granted in part and denied in part the defendants’ motion to dismiss for failure to make a pre-suit demand on the board and for failure to state a claim, holding that demand...more

Some Questions Boards Might Want To Ask When Considering Fee-Shifting Bylaws

1. Is a fee-shifting bylaw facially valid under applicable law? The Delaware Supreme Court has held that a fee-shifting bylaw adopted by a Delaware non-stock corporation is facially valid. ATP Tour, Inc. v. Deutscher...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

How Broad Was That Bylaw?

In yesterday’s posting, I noted a recent Form 8-K filing that discloses the adoption of a fee-shifting bylaw. In ATP Tour, Inc. v. Deutscher Tennis Bund, 2014 Del. LEXIS 209 (Del. May 8, 2014), the Delaware Supreme Court...more

In re Westech Capital Corp., Consol. C.A. No. 8845-VCN (Del. Ch. May 29, 2014) (Noble, V.C.)

In this post-trial Section 225 decision, the Court of Chancery resolved a dispute about the meaning of two subsections of a voting agreement that determine how its signatories would designate the directors of Westech Capital...more

Rejecting Jewel v. Boxer, The District Court’s Heller Decision Is A Potential Knock-Out Punch Against Unfinished Business Claims...

The Order Re Summary Judgment issued on June 11, 2014 by Judge Charles R. Breyer of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in the Heller Ehrman LLP bankruptcy case may prove to be a knock-out punch...more

Public Company Adopts Fee Shifting Bylaw

The Delaware Supreme Court caused quite a stir when it concluded that a fee shifting bylaw adopted by a non-stock corporation did not run afoul of the Delaware General Corporation Law. ATP Tour, Inc. v. Deutscher Tennis...more

Ocean Avenue LLC v. County of Los Angeles Affirmed; AB 2372 Passes Assembly

On June 3, 2014, in a published decision, the California Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District affirmed the Superior Court ruling in Ocean Avenue LLC v. County of Los Angeles, holding that even though 100 percent...more

The ban on fee-shifting bylaws is temporarily defeated – 4 points for public companies

The Delaware state senator responsible for introducing a proposed ban on fee-shifting bylaws has instead sponsored a resolution – unanimously passed in the Delaware state senate – to delay any vote on the proposed ban until...more

Biolase v. Oracle Partners, L.P., C.A. No. 9438 (Del. June 12, 2014)

In this expedited appeal from a post-trial decision of the Court of Chancery, the Delaware Supreme Court affirmed the Court of Chancery’s holding that, under 8 Del. C. § 141(b), directors may resign by verbal statements,...more

Bishop Gassis v. Corkery, C.A. No. 8868-VCG (Del. Ch. May 28, 2014) (Glasscock, V.C.)

In this post-trial decision in a proceeding pursuant to 8 Del. C. § 225, the Court of Chancery held that the board of the Sudan Relief Fund, Inc. (the “Fund”), a charitable corporation, validly removed the plaintiff as a...more

Oracle Partners, L.P., v. Biolase, Inc., C.A. No. 9438-VCN (Del. Ch. May 21, 2014) (Noble, V.C.)

In this post-trial memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery ruled on the board composition of Defendant and Counter-Plaintiff Biolase, Inc. (“Biolase”). The Court declared that only one of two contested director...more

Allen v. El Paso Pipeline GP Co., L.L.C., C.A. No. 7520-VCL (Del. Ch. May 19, 2014) (Laster, V.C.)

In this opinion, the Court of Chancery applied the two-pronged Tooley standard to determine whether a plaintiff’s breach of contract claims in the limited partnership context were derivative or direct. Finding such claims to...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

In re Interstate General Media Holdings, LLC, C.A. No. 9221-VCP (Del. Ch. Apr. 25, 2014) (Parsons, V.C.)

In this memorandum opinion regarding the judicial dissolution of a Delaware LLC, the Court of Chancery, ordered the sale of the company in a private, English-style auction, as opposed to a public auction, in order to maximize...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

Third Circuit Adopts Successorship Liability Standard for FLSA Claims

In Thompson v. Real Estate Mortgage Network, 748 F.3d 142 (2014), the Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit determined, in a case of first impression, that a new employer may be held accountable for its predecessor’s wage...more

Collateral Estoppel Sinks LLC Members' Claim

It might seem uncontroversial that the members of a limited liability company cannot follow with a personal lawsuit for injuries after their LLC litigates, and loses, claims based on the same issues. But it took the Business...more

Using Corporate Bylaws and Charters to Set the Rules for Shareholder Litigation

Recent court decisions, including the Delaware Supreme Court’s opinion earlier this month in ATP Tour, Inc. v. Deutscher Tennis Bund, have focused new attention on the use of corporate bylaws and charters to establish the...more

This International Shoe Doesn’t Fit: Subsidiary May Not Be Parent’s Agent

Is a wholly-owned subsidiary per se an agent of the parent? In an opinion issued yesterday, the Nevada Supreme Court answered “not necessarily”. The legal issue was whether the German parent of a Delaware corporation doing...more

Delaware May Level Playing Field With Regard to Fee-Shifting Bylaws

As discussed (see link below), a recent decision of the Delaware Supreme Court could be a game changer in the world of stockholder litigation. In ATP Tour, Inc. v. Deutscher Tennis Bund (Del. May 8, 2014), the Delaware...more

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