Commercial Contracts

  • April 29, 2016

    National Indemnity Says Awards Should Be Enforced

    Berkshire Hathway's National Indemnity Co. urged a New York federal court to enforce an order confirming three arbitration awards in its favor over a $168 million insurance settlement dispute while a Brazilian reinsurer appeals the order to the Second Circuit.

  • April 29, 2016

    3 Employer Takeaways From The Defend Trade Secrets Act

    With President Barack Obama on the cusp of signing a bipartisan bill that offers companies greater access to federal court in trade secret cases, attorneys say employers need to prepare for the law’s other provisions, including a new requirement that employees be notified of their right to disclose trade secrets as part of government investigations.

  • April 29, 2016

    Law Firm Claims Jet Co., Counsel Lied In Court

    A law firm in a breach-of-contract suit against a company that allows users to book seats on private jets asked a Florida federal judge Thursday to impose “the harshest of sanctions” against Blackjet Technology Inc. for allegedly withholding discovery documents until near the eve of trial.

  • April 29, 2016

    Feds Say Arapaho-Shoshone Row Is An Intertribal Dispute

    The federal government on Thursday urged a Montana district court to nix the Northern Arapaho tribe’s suit alleging that the Bureau of Indian Affairs wrongly gave the Eastern Shoshone tribe its blessing to take control of programs regulating joint tribal land, saying that the dispute is an intertribal matter.

  • April 29, 2016

    Insurer Says It Needn't Cover $16.5M Hyatt Defect Battle

    Mt. Hawley Insurance Co. on Friday filed a suit in California federal court claiming that it has no duty to defend or indemnify a general contractor in a $16.5 million construction defect action filed by the developer of a Hyatt hotel, saying that multiple policy exclusions apply to bar coverage.

  • April 29, 2016

    Cement Cos. In Australia Hit With $14.1M Antitrust Penalty

    An Australian court has ordered related companies known under the Cement Australia corporate umbrella to pay $14.1 million in penalties after determining the companies stifled competition in the market for a particular concrete ingredient, Australia’s competition watchdog said Friday.

  • April 29, 2016

    WWII Photog's Estate Says Corbis Owes $4M For Using Images

    Photo licensing company Corbis Corp. owes $4 million to an agent of Soviet World War II photographer Yevgeny Khaldei’s estate for using images from Khaldei’s collection without paying for them, according to a suit filed Thursday in a New York state court.

  • April 29, 2016

    Ferrari Hid Defect Behind Total Engine Failures, Suit Says

    Ferrari hid a design defect in certain sports cars that causes exhaust manifold parts to be sucked into the engine and ultimately leads to total engine failure, according to a proposed nationwide class action filed in New Jersey federal court Friday.

  • April 29, 2016

    Carriers Aim To Wring Fees From Level 3 After Massive MDL

    Local telephone providers are suing telecommunications company Level 3 Communications in Texas federal court for withholding fees for some long-distance wireless calls, arguing that a judge's previous decision in related multidistrict litigation requires those fees to be paid.

  • April 29, 2016

    Bill Would Ban Forced Arbitration For Telecom Customers

    Amid growing backlash against forced arbitration in consumer contract disputes, a group of senators led by Richard Blumenthal and Al Franken introduced legislation Thursday to outlaw forced-arbitration clauses in contracts for telecommunications services.

  • April 29, 2016

    Hong Kong Co. Settles Suit To Cement $1.16M Arbitration Award

    A Hong Kong-based company settled its federal suit seeking to enforce a roughly $1.16 million arbitration award obtained against a California-based company in a dispute over a purchase agreement for iron ore lumps, according to a stipulation and order filed Thursday.

  • April 29, 2016

    Santander HQ Owner Can’t Escape $103M Fee Deal

    A U.K. appeals court on Thursday upheld a judgment ordering the owner of Banco Santander SA’s Madrid headquarters to pay an arrangement worth €90 million ($103 million) that constituted part of the loan used to purchase the property.

  • April 29, 2016

    Morgan Lewis Denied Dilworth Docs In Philly Newspaper Row

    Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP was blocked Thursday from securing documents from Dilworth Paxson LLP in a Pennsylvania lawsuit accusing the former firm of improperly taking sides in a feud between rival groups that had owned Philadelphia's two major daily newspapers.

  • April 29, 2016

    Ex-NBA Star Arenas Sues Over Investment In Phone Game

    Former NBA star Gilbert Arenas sued a former business partner in California state court Wednesday over a mobile game they co-own, saying he invested more than $100,000 in development that has yet to yield a viable game.

  • April 28, 2016

    Investors' Suit Over Williams-ETE Energy Deal Tossed

    An Oklahoma federal judge on Thursday rejected a bid by a Williams Cos. Inc. investor to block the natural gas giant’s proposed merger with an Energy Transfer Equity LP affiliate over alleged misrepresentations about revenue gains, saying investors were cautioned about future potential performance risks.

  • April 28, 2016

    T. Rowe Price Hit With Suit Over $388M In Mutual Fund Fees

    T. Rowe Price Associates Inc. is overcharging mutual funds by as much as $388 million a year, and has increased its investment management fees steeply without cause, according to a complaint lodged by a group of investors in California federal court Wednesday.

  • April 28, 2016

    Counsel Row Resolved In $70M Wind Energy Award Suit

    An investor dispute about hiring and firing counsel that derailed a wind energy venture's pursuit of a $70 million arbitral award from a Chinese former business partner has been resolved, according to a Thursday filing in Texas federal court.

  • April 28, 2016

    Gas Co. Not Paying Enough For Drilling Rights, Suit Claims

    Gas drilling company Southwestern Energy and its subsidiaries were hit Wednesday with a putative class action in Arkansas federal court claiming that it is shortchanging natural gas drilling rights holders. 

  • April 28, 2016

    Irrigation Co. Says Distributor Can't Evade Arbitration

    A Canadian irrigation management systems manufacturer continued to press a Wisconsin federal court Thursday to toss or send to arbitration a suit by a distributor claiming it breached an agreement, saying the distributor’s attempts to “evade arbitration” were unpersuasive.

  • April 28, 2016

    Avis Must Face Bias Claim In Rental Co.’s Suit, 3rd Circ. Says

    The Third Circuit on Thursday revived a discrimination claim in a suit in which a vehicle rental business run by two African-Americans accused Avis Rent a Car System Inc. of unfairly terminating an operating agreement, although the appeals court refused to revive its retaliation claim.

Expert Analysis

  • OPINION: Engaging The Media May Help Your Client

    Liz Mair

    While I am confident that the decisions in Windsor and Obergefell were made on the basis of the dictates of the Constitution, I am also confident that the communications efforts undertaken gave the justices additional comfort to make the right call, and ensured that these decisions were not treated as a Roe v. Wade redux, says Liz Mair, former online communications director for the Republican National Committee and president of Mair Strategies.

  • Abry Still Relevant For Dodging Post-Closing Claims

    Benjamin M. Grossman

    In the 10 years since the seminal decision in Abry Partners v. F&W Acquisition, Delaware courts have continued to apply its principles while providing guidance on how to effectively bar extracontractual fraud claims in private acquisitions. Unfortunately, the lessons of Abry and subsequent cases have yet to be fully internalized by some practitioners, says Benjamin Grossman of Jones Day.

  • Parsing 'True Relief' In Florida's 4th District

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    In light of MYD Marine Distributor Inc. v. International Paint Ltd., a party with a case pending in a trial court in Florida's Fourth District Court of Appeal can no longer shield itself from exposure to attorneys’ fees by including a cause of action for nonmonetary damages when the “true relief” sought in litigation is monetary, says Cristina Cambo of Rumberger Kirk & Caldwell PA.

  • Using The New Federal Rules To Rein In Discovery

    Martin J. Healy

    The 2015 amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure present a fertile opportunity for defendants to leverage the rules' renewed focus on reasonableness and proportionality to rein in rampant discovery abuse. Courts' application of the amended rules has already shown promise in this regard, say Martin Healy and Joseph Fanning of Sedgwick LLP.

  • Dentons: A New Kind Of Network?

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    Dentons is two different law firm networks in one. So even if the Swiss verein structure should eventually fail and Dentons is forced to operate as a network of independent law firms, it could still be a significant market force, says Mark A. Cohen, a recovering civil trial lawyer and the founder of Legal Mosaic LLC.

  • M&A Strategies In A World Of Rising Antitrust Risk: Part 2

    Bernard A. Nigro Jr.

    One tactical issue to be kept in mind is to what extent merger agreement provisions will affect the leverage of antitrust regulators. Another tactic relates to the timing of a transaction based on political considerations, say attorneys with Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson LLP.

  • Oil And Gas Termination Payments: Devil Is In The Details

    Richard Goldberg

    Most energy contracts are written under a standard form master agreement where it's not immediately evident that there’s much room for dispute. However, despite the relatively straightforward nature of the calculations involved with termination payments, experience shows there is plenty of room left for disagreement, say Richard Goldberg and James Read at The Brattle Group.

  • When A Contract 'Runs With The Land' — A Look At The Laws

    Michael G. Connelly

    The determination of whether an oil producer may avoid the burdens of a gathering agreement through rejection in bankruptcy has boiled down to whether the agreement "runs with the land." The applicable state requirement of when an agreement runs with the land will not only determine bankruptcy disputes, but will also inform the negotiation of future gathering agreements, say Michael Connelly and David Fournier of Pepper Hamilton LLP.

  • Avoiding The Pitfalls Of Researching Attorneys In PACER

    Brian Howard

    While PACER is a powerful tool for gaining information, practitioners should keep in mind that certain flaws often cause lawyers to be omitted from cases they’ve worked on or to show up associated with the wrong firm. These errors build up across aggregate records, tainting any conclusions drawn from such data — often to a surprising extent, according to Brian Howard, a legal data scientist at Lex Machina.

  • When Must A Successor Employer Bargain With Unions?

    Excerpt from Lexis Practice Advisor
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    In the event of a corporate merger, a corporate asset transaction, or other type of business inheritance, a new or changed employing entity may have a duty to bargain with a certified or recognized union that represented the employees of a predecessor entity. David Phippen at Constangy Brooks Smith & Prophete LLP examines when and to what extent a new owner is obligated to bargain.