Breach of Duty

News & Analysis as of

Do Not Pass Go. Do Not Collect $200?: D&O Insurance—Advance Warning on Fee Advancement

In a recent string of decisions, the Delaware Chancery Court has addressed the scope of the right of Directors and Officers to have their legal expenses paid while governmental investigations or legal proceedings against them...more

Inside the Courts: An Update From Skadden Securities Litigators - November 2015 / Volume 7 / Issue 4

We are pleased to present Inside the Courts (Volume 7, Issue 4), Skadden’s securities litigation newsletter. This quarter’s issue includes summaries and associated court opinions of selected cases principally decided between...more

Common Law Business Partnership – Can You Have a Partner Despite a Contrary Agreement?

Believing that a non-binding term sheet and earlier written agreements precluded any unwritten partnership, Original Oil Production Services (OOPS) cut out its colleague Petroleum United Transfer Zenith (PUTZ) and secretly...more

Chancery Rejects Facebook Stockholder Ratification Argument

In Espinoza v. Zuckerberg, a stockholder challenged the Facebook board of directors' unanimous approval of a compensation plan for the company's six non-employee directors. The board consisted of eight directors, with only...more

2009 Caiola Family Trust v. PWA, LLC, C.A. No. 8028-VCP (Del. Ch. Oct. 14, 2015) (Parsons, V.C.)

In this 91-page post-trial opinion addressing a dispute between members of a Delaware limited liability company formed to own and operate a residential apartment complex in Kansas, the Court of Chancery held that the...more

Court Of Chancery Declines Stay In LLC Advancement Case

Tulum Management USA LLC v. Casten, C.A. 11321-VCN (November 9, 2015) - A Delaware court will not stay its hand in favor of litigation elsewhere in an advancement or indemnification case absent “exceptional...more

Superior Court Explains Interference With Prospective Business Relationship And Good Faith Claim

This decision does an excellent job of setting out the elements of a claim for interference with prospective business relationships. Even better, it is a comprehensive summary of the elements of a claim for breach of the duty...more

Espinoza v. Zuckerberg, No. 9745-CB (Del. Ch. Oct. 28, 2015) (Bouchard, C.)

In a decision reinforcing the importance of observing corporate formalities, Chancellor Bouchard found that a controlling stockholder cannot ratify a board’s self-dealing with something as informal as an affidavit, a...more

Caspian Select Credit Master Fund Ltd. v. Gohl, C.A. No. 10244-VCN (Del. Ch. Sept. 28, 2015) (Noble, V.C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery granted in part and denied in part a motion to dismiss direct and derivative claims against the company’s board and controlling stockholders for breaches of fiduciary duty...more

Insurance Act 2015 Reforms - What Does It Mean For Policyholders?

The far-reaching reforms affect any business using insurance and go into effect August 2016. The Insurance Act 2015 (the Act) will come into force 12 August 2016. The Act introduces a raft of changes and will be relevant...more

Benefits Litigation Update – Fall 2015

Message from ERIC President and CEO Annette Guarisco Fildes: Welcome to the Fall edition of Benefits Litigation Update, brought to you by The ERISA Industry Committee (ERIC) and the law firm of Epstein Becker &...more

Insurance Recovery Law - November 2015

Despite Prior Suits, Policyholder Entitled to Coverage for DOJ Investigation - Why it matters: A policyholder was entitled to coverage for a Department of Justice (DOJ) investigation despite already facing possibly...more

Court of Chancery Applies Business Judgment Standard Under New Supreme Court Precedent

This is an important decision that reverses a prior opinion in the same case. The Court did so because after it issued its prior opinion, the Delaware Supreme Court issued its Corwin decision holding that when a merger is...more

A Compilation of Enforcement and Non-Enforcement Actions

Non-Enforcement - SEC Decides Against Mounting an Appeal in Koch Ruling - The July 2015 ruling by the D.C. Circuit Court in Koch v. SEC will apparently not be challenged by the SEC. The Court ruled in that...more

Court of Chancery Again Explains Claim Against An Investment Banker

In this unusual factual circumstance, the Court denied a motion to dismiss a claim against an investment banker for aiding and abetting a board’s alleged breach of its duty to act with care. Note that the board itself was...more

ERISA: Shutting Down Equitable Relief Claims — Disgorgement Claim Dismissed On Rule 12(c) Motion

You already know that in March 2015, the 6th Circuit issued an en banc decision rejecting disgorgement of profits claims. Rochow v. Life Ins. Co. of N. Am., 780 F.3d 364, 372 (6th Cir. 2015)(en banc) (rejecting $3.8 million...more

Employees and “Authorized Access”: A Threat from Within?

Workplace privacy has become an increasingly challenging issue for employees and employers alike. With technological advancements, employers have enhanced visibility into employee behavior including their use of company...more

Michigan Court Dismisses Cross-Claim as Insurer Not Properly Subject to a Claim for Breach of Fiduciary Duty

In Van Loo v. Cajun Operating Co, No. 14-cv-10604 (E.D. Mich. Sept. 17, 2015), the Eastern District of Michigan, a Sixth Circuit district court, held that the requirement for evidence of insurability was triggered based on...more

The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - October 2015

Editor's Overview - This month, we review the Second Circuit's ruling in New York State Psychiatric Ass'n, Inc. v. UnitedHealth Grp. wherein the Second Circuit ruled that: (i) a provider association has associational...more

Inside M&A - October 2015

Overview of SPACs and Latest Trends - A number of recent successful business combination transactions involving special-purpose acquisition companies (SPACs) led by prominent sponsors have driven a resurgence in the SPAC...more

Insights: The Delaware Edition - October 2015

We are pleased to share with you the inaugural issue of Insights: The Delaware Edition, a periodic publication addressing significant Delaware deal litigation and corporation law developments. In This Issue: - Q&A...more

"Delaware Supreme Court Reaffirms Important Protections for Corporate Directors"

A trio of opinions from the Delaware Supreme Court, each authored by Chief Justice Leo E. Strine, Jr., has reaffirmed Delaware’s deference to the business judgment of disinterested corporate decision-makers and restored...more

Beware of Good Intentions: Insurer Cannot Escape Duty to Defend by Interpleading Policy Limits That Were Not Subject to Competing...

On October 6, 2015, the United States District Court, Northern District of California held that an insurer breached its duty to defend by interpleading remaining policy limits and ceasing its defense of its insured. ...more

"Dole Ruling Serves as Cautionary Tale for Take-Private Deals"

Earlier this year, in a consolidated breach of fiduciary duty and appraisal action, Vice Chancellor J. Travis Laster of the Delaware Court of Chancery issued a post-trial opinion that includes many important takeaways for...more

Delaware Court of Chancery Cautions Directors: Be Vigilant in Recognizing Advisor’s Conflict of Interests

Shareholders challenged the merger of Zale Corporation with Signet Jewelers Ltd. In a decision dated October 1, 2015, the Delaware Court of Chancery credited allegations that the board of directors of Zale breached its...more

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