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Delaware Supreme Court to Chancery: You Have Broad Powers

Books-and-records litigation does not typically grab headlines. In fact, few cases litigated under Section 220 of the Delaware General Corporation Law result in written opinions authored by the Delaware Supreme Court....more

Southern District Dismisses Complaints Against China North Director and Consultant

On December 10, a New York district court judge dismissed a securities fraud class action brought by investors in China North East Petroleum Holdings, Ltd. against former director Robert Bruce (and others) on the ground that...more

Forum Selection Bylaws Gain Additional Support in California

In adopting an exclusive forum selection bylaw, companies can avoid the cost and complication of multi-forum litigation after an M&A transaction. In response to the wasteful and burdensome trend of multi-forum...more

Ninth Circuit Clarifies Pleading Standard for Securities-Fraud Claims

The Ninth Circuit recently joined the debate on whether the heightened pleading standard of Fed. R. Civ. P. 9(b) or the more relaxed notice-pleading standard of Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a) applies to pleading loss causation for a...more

No Auction Required – Delaware Supreme Court Affirms Board Flexibility under Revlon

Ruling that an active solicitation process is not necessarily required for a target board of directors to satisfy its fiduciary duties in a change of control transaction, the Delaware Supreme Court overturned a preliminary...more

Ninth Circuit Applies Fifth Third v. Dudenhoeffer to Reverse Dismissal of Stock Drop Case

Speed Read - The Ninth Circuit becomes the first appellate court to interpret the Supreme Court’s Fifth Third v. Dudenhoeffer holding. In its ruling, the Ninth Circuit held that participants can maintain a claim...more

Bayens v Kinross Gold Corporation – Misrepresentation Claims in Securities Class Actions

Ontario's statutory regime for secondary market liability came into effect in 2006 as a result of amendments to the Securities Act (Ontario) (the OSA), creating a statutory cause of action for deficient market disclosure....more

Ninth Circuit Requires Particularity In All Elements Of Securities Fraud Pleading

Sometimes, I find it useful to take a step back and review the legal standard applicable to securities fraud claims under Section 10(b) and Rule 10b-5. To stay in court, and securities litigation all about surviving motions...more

Platinum Partners Value Arbitrage Fund L.P. v. Echo Therapeutics, Inc., C.A. No. 10303-VCN (Del. Ch. Nov. 14, 2014) (Noble, V.C.)

In this letter opinion, the Court of Chancery denied a motion to expedite proceedings in which a stockholder sought to call a special meeting to remove a majority of the corporation’s directors....more

In re Novell, Inc. S’holder Litig., C.A. No. 6032 (Del. Ch. Nov. 25, 2014) (Noble, V.C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery granted summary judgment in favor of defendants on claims alleging that directors acted in bad faith by favoring a bidder in a sale process for reasons other than the pursuit...more

Court Clarifies Law on Enforceability of Obligations of Non-Signatories in Private Mergers

In a fact-specific case with potential ramifications for future mergers under Delaware law, Cigna Health and Life Insurance Co., a preferred stockholder of Audax Health Solutions Inc., whose shares were extinguished by a...more

The Top 10 Obstacles to Litigating Securities Fraud Claims: Part I

Introduction: Congress passed the Securities Act of 1933, 15 U.S.C. §§ 77a et seq. (Securities Act), and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, 15 U.S.C. §§ 78a et seq. (Exchange Act, collectively, the Acts) following...more

Great Hill Equity Partners IV, LP v. SIG Growth Equity Fund I, LLLP, C.A. No. 7906 (Del. Ch. Nov. 26, 2014) (Glasscock, V.C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery largely denied but granted in part defendants’ motion to dismiss claims relating to a 2011 merger in which plaintiffs Great Hill Equity Partners IV, LP and related entities...more

Lee v. Pincus et al., C.A. No. 8458-CB (Del. Ch. Nov. 14, 2014) (Bouchard, C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery partially granted defendants’ motion to dismiss, holding that (i) plaintiff had stated a claim for breach of fiduciary duty against the Director Defendants because it was...more

Higher Educ. Mgmt. Group, Inc. v. Mathews et al., C.A. No. 9110-VCP (Del. Ch. Nov. 3, 2014) (Parsons, V.C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery granted defendants’ motion to dismiss derivative claims asserted by plaintiff stockholders on the grounds that the plaintiffs failed to adequately plead demand futility under...more

In re Sanchez Energy Deriv. Litig., C.A. No. 9132-VCG (Del. Ch. Nov. 25, 2014) (Glasscock, V.C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery held that plaintiff stockholders failed to plead particularized facts sufficient to demonstrate demand futility and dismissed the plaintiffs’ fiduciary duty, aiding and...more

Delaware Court of Chancery Applies Business Judgment Rule to Directors Who Approve Merger Supported by Large Shareholders

In its October 24, 2014, decision in In re Crimson Exploration Inc. Stockholder Litigation, C.A. No. 8541, the Delaware Court of Chancery confirmed that the business judgment rule is applicable in evaluating claims for breach...more

How New Litigation May Change "Dark Pool" Trading

Last spring popular author Michael Lewis described the world of high-frequency stock trades and dark pools in his book, Flash Boys. Between then and now, the New York Attorney General (“NYAG”), a group of public investors,...more

Federal Court Holds That Lack of Loss Causation Is Not a Defense Under Massachusetts Blue Sky Law

The United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts recently held in Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co. v. Residential Funding Co., LLC, that lack of loss causation is not available even as an affirmative...more

When California Copied Rule 10b-5 Did It Shut The State Courthouse Door To Securities Fraud Suits?

Section 27 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 provides: “The district courts of the United States . . . shall have exclusive jurisdiction of violations of [the Exchange Act] or the rules and regulations thereunder,...more

Inside The Courts - November 2014 | Volume 6 | Issue 4

In This Issue: CLASS CERTIFICATION: Fort Worth Emps. Ret. Fund v. J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., No. 09-cv-3701 (JPO) (S.D.N.Y. Sept. 30, 2014) Discovery: ..Freedman v. Weatherford Int’l Ltd., No. 12...more

U.S. Supreme Court Scrutinizes Three Proposed Standards for Determining Section 11 Liability for Statements of Opinion or Belief

On Monday, November 3, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court held oral argument in Omnicare, Inc. v. Laborers District Council Construction Industry Pension Fund, No. 13-435. As noted in our previous client alert regarding this case,...more

Alberta Securities Commission Applies to SCC for Leave to Appeal Insider Trading Decision in Walton

The Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) has applied to the Supreme Court of Canada for leave to appeal the August 2014 decision of the Alberta Court of Appeal (Court) in Walton v Alberta (Securities Commission), 2014 ABCA 723...more

In re Allergan, Inc. S’holder Litig., C.A. No. 9609-CB (Del. Ch. Nov. 7, 2014) (Bouchard, C.)

In this Memorandum Opinion, the Court of Chancery denied plaintiffs’ motion for partial summary judgment, holding that (i) plaintiffs’ request for declaratory relief regarding whether certain certificate of incorporation and...more

NCUA Sues Deutsche Bank National Trust Co. For Allegedly Failing to Comply With RMBS Trustee Duties

The National Credit Union Administration, acting as liquidating agent for five failed credit unions, sued Deutsche Bank National Trust Company (DBNTC) for allegedly breaching its duties as trustee under the governing trust...more

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