Shareholder Litigation

News & Analysis as of

9th Circuit Holds Insured vs. Insured Exclusion Applicable to Claims Brought by FDIC

In its recent decision in FDIC v. BancIsure, Inc., 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 452 (Jan. 10, 2017), the United States Court of Appeals had occasion to consider the scope of an insured vs. insured exclusion in the context of...more

Delaware Chancery Court Confirms the Invalidity of Fee-Shifting Bylaws for Stock Corporations

In Solak v. Sarowitz, C.A. No. 12299-CB (Del. Ch. Dec. 27, 2016), the Delaware Court of Chancery held that plaintiff stated a claim that a stock corporation’s fee-shifting bylaw was facially invalid under Section 109(b) of...more

Can a Minority Shareholder Force the Majority to Buy Their Interest?

The question often arises whether a minority shareholder can require the majority to buy his interest in a privately held company. The answer, as a general matter, is that absent an agreement that provides for the purchase,...more

Delaware Supreme Court Provides Guidance on Director Independence

Seyfarth Synopsis: The Delaware Supreme Court recently reversed the dismissal of a derivative complaint for failure to plead demand excusal because it found that certain directors of Zynga Inc. were not independent due to...more

Shareholders Derivative Suit Filed against Wendy’s for Data Breach

Continuing the trend of filing a shareholders derivative suit following a data breach, a Wendy’s shareholder recently filed a derivative suit against Wendy’s executives and board members alleging they did not adequately...more

Process Is Paramount: The Delaware Court of Chancery Gives “100% Weight” to Merger Price in Determining Company’s Fair Value in...

On December 16, 2016, the Delaware Court of Chancery issued a post-trial opinion in an appraisal proceeding arising from the acquisition of Lender Processing Services, Inc. (“LPS” or the “Company”) by Fidelity National...more

Home Depot Evades Shareholder’s Derivative Suit for 2014 Data Breach

Public companies that are proactively working to mitigate “cyber” risks and prepare to respond to potential incidents frequently ask whether a “breach” will lead to litigation, loss of customers, stock price decline, and...more

"Delaware Supreme Court Rules on Director Independence"

The Delaware Supreme Court recently issued an important decision on the subject of director independence. In Sandys v. Pincus, No. 157, 2016 (Del. Dec. 5, 2016), the Delaware Supreme Court held that certain directors of...more

Court Of Chancery Appoints Lead Counsel In Appraisal Case

Appraisal petitioners normally agree to consolidate their actions, on which law firm(s) will represent them, and on how their common objectives will be carried out. That did not happen in this case: the petitioners disputed...more

Some Pitfalls of Negotiating Your Own Buyout in a Business Divorce

More and more shareholder dispute litigations are settling earlier than ever before, which is obviously a good thing for anyone who does not want to pay a fortune in legal fees (i.e., everyone). The reason is simple – in all...more

Shareholders’ Derivative Suit Against Home Depot Dismissed

On November 30, 2016, The Home Depot, Inc. (Home Depot) got a victory in the shareholders’ derivative suit filed against it for its alleged failure to institute necessary controls to secure its data relating to its 2014...more

Court Of Chancery Explains Standing To Bring Fiduciary Duty Claims After Being Forced to Sell Stock

This is an important decision because it clarifies when a stockholder loses standing to bring a fiduciary duty case because he sold his stock. Briefly, breach of fiduciary duty claims may be direct (belonging to the...more

Marquee Energy Appeal Reaffirms Plans of Arrangement Law in Canada

In a decision released on November 15, 2016, the Alberta Court of Appeal allowed the appeal of Marquee Energy Ltd. (Marquee) from a prior decision of the Court of Queen's Bench of Alberta which had required, as a condition to...more

How Does One Know When A Corporation Is Antagonistic?

When a shareholder files a derivative suit in state court, the defendants often will try to have the case removed to the federal district court. Federal courts, however, are courts of limited jurisdiction and not every...more

Delaware Court of Chancery Dismisses Derivative Suits Alleging Directors Wrongfully Refused Litigation Demands

Seyfarth Synopsis: On November 30, 2016, The Delaware Court of Chancery dismissed two derivative suits filed on behalf of the Bank of New York Mellon (“BNYM”). The companion memorandum and letter opinions reaffirm the heavy...more

Claims That Controlling Stockholder Received Unique Benefits Dismissed

In GAMCO Asset Management v. iHeartMedia, Delaware's Court of Chancery considered claims that a controlling stockholder's liquidity needs created conflicts in otherwise arm's-length transactions with third parties. As...more

“Directors’ Decisions Must Be Reasonable, not Perfect” Home Depot’s Shareholder Derivative Litigation Arising from Data Breach...

On November 30, 2016, a federal district court dismissed a shareholder derivative complaint against various current and former directors of Home Depot arising from the well-publicized data breach the company suffered between...more

The Death of Merger Litigation Part II – The North Carolina Business Court Puts a Nail in the Coffin

In a recent article entitled “The Death of Merger Litigation?”, we wrote about the Delaware Court of Chancery’s increasing refusal to approve disclosure-only settlements in shareholder lawsuits challenging public company...more

Delaware Supreme Court Finds Pre-Suit Demand Was Excused

When a stockholder files a derivative suit she can avoid dismissal under Rule 23.1’s pre-suit demand-on-the-board requirement by showing that a majority of the directors were not independent enough to fairly consider her...more

The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - November 2016

This month we review a recent Second Circuit decision addressing ERISA plan status as a class member in a securities shareholder class action. As discussed in the article, the decision exposes a potential conflict among the...more

Plan of Arrangement: A Vote for All? Not So, Says Court of Appeal

In Smoothwater Capital Corporation v. Marquee Energy Ltd. (Smoothwater), the Alberta Court of Appeal (Court) overturned the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench controversial decision granting shareholders of an acquiring company a...more

Keep Looking Forward: Federal Court Holds Company’s Bad Legal Predictions Protected by PSLRA’s Safe Harbor

In a comprehensive tour of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act’s (“PSLRA”) safe-harbor provisions, on November 22, 2016, a federal court in Massachusetts dismissed a shareholder class-action lawsuit against Neovasc,...more

Supreme Court of Canada Revisits Oppression

A corporation's failure to follow legal formalities under the Canada Business Corporations Act, RSC 1985 c C-44 [CBCA] does not, by itself, establish oppression, the Supreme Court recently held in Mennillo v Intramodal inc.,...more

The End of Disclosure-Only Settlements in Securities Class Actions?

After nearly a decade of prominence, disclosure-only settlements may be going extinct. These settlements occur in class action cases arising from the announcement of a merger or acquisition. The plaintiff class alleges that...more

"Two Court of Chancery Deal Litigation Decisions Provide Helpful Guidance"

Chelsea Therapeutics: Post-Closing Bad Faith Claim a ‘Rare Bird’ in Delaware Absent Allegations of Self-Interestedness or Lack of Independence - In In re Chelsea Therapeutics International LTD Stockholders Litigation,...more

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