Civil Procedure Securities

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June 2015 Independent Contractor Compliance and Misclassification News Update

The month of June 2015 created more newspaper stories and blog posts on the subject of independent contractor misclassification than any other. Why? Uber lost an IC misclassification case and FedEx Ground agreed to pay $228...more

SEC Files It's First Robocop Cherry Picking Action

When the SEC announced it financial fraud task force and a related data initiative to facilitate the identification of situations where the company “cooked the books,” many dubbed the data program “Robocop.” While the SEC may...more

Delaware Governor Signs Bill Prohibiting Bylaws on Fee-Shifting

Last week, Delaware Governor Jack Markell signed Senate Bill 75, which amends the Delaware General Corporation Law to prohibit Delaware stock corporations from adopting bylaws that force shareholders to pay legal fees if they...more

Professor Bainbridge Takes On S.B. 75 And The Delaware Bar

UCLA Law Professor Stephen Bainbridge recently posted an article calling Delaware’s recently enacted S.B. 75 a “self-inflicted wound”. SB 75, which was signed into law late last month, limits the ability of Delaware stock...more

UPDATE: Significant Amendments to Delaware General Corporation Law Enacted, Become Effective August 1st

Delaware Senate Bill 75 (“SB 75”) was approved by the House of Representatives on June 11, 2015 and signed into law by Delaware Governor Jack Markell on June 25. The new law enacts two very significant changes to the Delaware...more

Executive Compensation Paid to Controlling Shareholders Subject to Business Judgment Review When Approved by an Independent...

Members of the Dolan family hold 73% of the voting power of Cablevision Systems Corporation’s stock. A shareholder commenced a derivative action regarding the executive compensation paid to Dolan family members serving as...more

A Year Later: The Impact of Halliburton II Is Still Developing

In June 2014, the Supreme Court issued its decision in Halliburton Co. v. Erica P. John Fund Inc. (“Halliburton II”), a putative class action in which Halliburton investors alleged that the company made misrepresentations...more

Theratechnologies Inc. V. 12185 Canada Inc: Supreme Court Of Canada Raises The Bar For Obtaining Leave To Bring Secondary Market...

In Theratechnologies inc. v. 12185 Canada inc., the Supreme Court of Canada has ruled that requirements that plaintiffs demonstrate that their claims have been brought in good faith and have a reasonable chance of succeeding...more

Banks’ Motion to Dismiss Commerzbank RMBS Fraud Claims Granted

On June 18, 2015, Justice Marcy Friedman of the New York Supreme Court dismissed RMBS fraud claims brought by Commerzbank AG London Branch (“Commerzbank”) against UBS, Nomura Holdings Inc., Barclays Bank PLC, Citigroup and...more

Supreme Court Denies Review of Fourth Circuit Loss Causation Case

The U.S. Supreme Court recently declined to grant certiorari to review the Fourth Circuit’s decision in RJR Pension Investment, et al. v. Tatum, 761 F.3d 363 (4th Cir. 2014). As we previously reported, a divided panel of the...more

MassMutual Motion for Partial Summary Judgment Denied As to 9 of 10 Securitizations

On June 22, 2015, United States District Judge Mark G. Mastroianni of the District of Massachusetts largely denied Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company’s (“MassMutual”) motion for partial summary judgment seeking to...more

Calma v. Templeton, C.A. No. 9579-CB (Del. Ch. Apr. 30, 2015) (Bouchard, C.)

In this opinion, the Court of Chancery denied a motion to dismiss a claim challenging grants of compensation to non-employee directors pursuant to a compensation plan that had been approved prospectively by stockholders. The...more

Bernstein Shur Business and Commerical Litigation Newsletter #52

We are pleased to present the 52nd edition of the Bernstein Shur Business and Commercial Litigation Newsletter. This month, we highlight recent cases that address the consequences of failure to adhere to a court’s brief...more

Orrick's Financial Industry Week in Review

EBA Updates Single Rulebook Q&As: June 26, 2015 - On June 26, 2015, the European Banking Authority (EBA) updated its Q&As on the single rulebook, publishing eight new questions. The single rulebook Q&As relate...more

No Theft Loss for Securities “Pump-and-Dump”

Pump-and-dump occurs when corporate officers or other shareholders fraudulently promote shares of a company and engage in fraudulent sales to increase the value of shares. This is injurious to other shareholders who suffer...more

Do Investment Advisers Automatically Have Fiduciary Duties to Their Clients?

I always thought they did. But on Friday I read this sentence: “An investment advisor-client relationship is not a de jure fiduciary relationship.” It sort of jumped out at me, because for a long time I’ve assumed that an...more

Solicitor General Urges Supreme Court to Decline to Hear Breach of Fiduciary Duty Case

On June 25, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court will decide whether to grant certiorari in Tatum v. RJR Pension Investment Committee, 761 F.3d 346 (4th Cir. 2014). As discussed in the September 29, 2014 edition of the ELU, Tatum...more

"The New Mutual Fund Exception: Ninth Circuit Allows Direct Claims to Redress Derivative Injury"

Courts have sought to simplify their approach to determining whether an action is derivative or direct — a determination that the Delaware Supreme Court has acknowledged “is sometimes difficult.” Tooley v. Donaldson, Lufkin &...more

Delaware Supreme Court Rejects Presumption of Disloyalty for Independent Directors

Public companies incorporated in Delaware frequently adopt a charter provision, pursuant to 8 Del. C. § 102(b)(7), that insulates their directors from monetary damages for breaches of the fiduciary duty of care. Those...more

Blog: Delaware Chancery Court Applies Entire Fairness Standard Of Review To Director Compensation

What is the judicial standard of review applicable to an award of compensation by directors to directors under an equity incentive compensation plan that has been approved by the shareholders? That was the question before...more

Second Circuit Tackles “Whistleblower” Protection Under Dodd-Frank

Last week, the Second Circuit heard oral arguments in Berman v. Neo@Ogilvy, a case that places squarely before the Court the question of who is a “whistleblower” within the meaning of the Dodd-Frank Act Wall Street Reform and...more

Shareholder Disputes: When is Just and Equitable Liquidation Appropriate?

Unfair prejudice claims are commonplace in the British Virgin Islands (BVI) following the introduction of bespoke provisions in the BVI Business Companies Act 2004 and have all but replaced old fashioned just and equitable...more

ISDA Launches BRRD Implementation Monitor

The implementation of the European Bank Recovery and Resolution Directive (BRRD) is currently ongoing in all EU member states, and is at different stages of the respective legislative process. In order to keep track of the...more

SEC Sanctions Independent Trustees for Approving Mutual Fund Advisory Contract without Sufficient Information

Underscoring the need for independent trustees to act vigilantly, a recent SEC consent order issued in an enforcement action imposed discipline on a mutual fund's independent trustees, its investment advisor, and the...more

Closely-Held Shareholder Derivative Actions are Alive and Well in Texas

After 30 years of running his family-owned business, Hillbilly Oil Co., Jed Clampett decided to retire in 2013. The board of directors elects Jethro Bodine as Hillbilly’s President and Elly May as Vice President. Both Jethro...more

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