Business Litigation Cases

Defended against claims of improperly appropriating assets

Description

LODHS represented a venture capital investor and its manager who were sued in Federal Bankruptcy Court by a Creditor’s Committee of a high-tech startup company that had filed for bankruptcy protection. The plaintiff committee alleged that our clients, along with other directors and VC investors, had committed waste and had improperly misappropriated assets of the high-tech startup company. 

Result

Through discovery, LODHS was able to demonstrate that the committee’s claims lacked merit and the case was settled without any payment by LODHS’ clients.

Breach of Contract Dismissal

Description

The firm represented a Michigan resident in a lawsuit brought in California alleging breach of contract and interference with contract arising from disclosure of a trade secret. The firm filed a notice of removal of the case to Federal District Court and then obtained a dismissal for lack of personal jurisdiction. 

Result

The dismissal was affirmed by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Picot v. Weston, (9th Cir. 2015) 780 F.3rd 1206. This was the first Ninth Circuit decision applying Walden v. Fiore, (2014) 134 S. Ct. 1115.

Business law requires experienced representation

To schedule a consultation about your business or corporate law dispute, contact us today.

Defamation Cases

Defamation – internet libel:

Description

The firm has brought an action for libel and false light on behalf of a client the firm has been representing as a defendant in an action for fraud. The plaintiff in the fraud action and his attorney retained a public relations firm to create a website and commission associated media activity falsely accusing our client of doing business deals with international human rights violators and profiting from the assets stolen by those human rights violators. Both the plaintiff and the attorney brought anti-SLAPP motions to have the defamation action dismissed under California law. The defamation defendants first sought to block discovery of their communications with the public relations firm claiming the communications were protected by attorney-client privilege.

Result

The firm was successful in getting the trial court to overrule the claim of privilege, and that ruling was fully affirmed by the California Court of Appeal for the Second District in Behunin v. Superior Court, (2017) 9 Cal. App. 5th 833. Subsequently, the firm was successful in getting the trial court to deny the anti-SLAPP motions because the defamatory statements were not matters of public interest.

Fraud Cases

Defense of fraud action:

Description

Our client, an investor in a successful international real estate investment partnership, was sued for more than $25 Million by an ex-friend and business associate who contended our client had promised the friend a substantial participation in the realestate partnership.

Result

After extensive discovery, we were able to obtain summary judgment on all of the ex-friend’s claims.

Prosecution of fraud and breach of fiduciary duty.

Description

Our clients were co-founders of a highly successful internet services firm. After bringing in a venture capitalist investor they acceded to his requests to bring in new management, with a promise from the VC that they would not be forced to give up their 25% stake in the company. Within a year of ceding management control, the VC, in conjunction with the new management, engineered a triangular reverse merger that forced our clients to accept roughly fifty cents per share and relinquish any ownership in the company while the VC was projecting a valuation 20X greater. The company was sold three years later for over $12 per share. The founders retained us several years after the statute of limitations would normally have run on claims for fraud and breach of fiduciary duty. We brought an action against several management members and the successor to the VC alleging fraud and breach of fiduciary duty – that the merger was inherently unfair to the founders and had been accomplished through the use of false and misleading representations. We further alleged that the statute of limitations had been tolled due to fraudulent concealment of material facts concerning the merger and its terms.

Result

After defeating a motion for summary judgment, the action was settled successfully.

Shareholder Litigation Cases

Disqualified counsel on shareholder derivative cases

Description

In two recent shareholder derivative cases, LODHS has been successful in disqualifying counsel from representing both the defendant directors and the corporation.

Result

Successful results on behalf of clients

Trade Secrets Cases

Investment firms' client information not trade secrets

Description

In an extremely hard-fought case, LODHS successfully represented a group of investment advisers who left their former firm to start their own and were then sued for trade secret misappropriation by the former firm. In the California District Court of Appeal, LODHS obtained a reversal of the trial court’s entry of a preliminary injunction barring the advisers’ solicitation of their former clients. (The Retirement Group v. Galante (2009) 176 Cal.App.4th 1226).

Result

At trial, we convinced the court that the names and contact information of the advisers’ clients were not trade secrets and our clients could not be prevented from using that information to solicit the investment clients to switch firms.

Trademark Litigation Cases

Relief from default on misuse of Chinese trademark

Description

LODHS successfully defended a Seychelles company in a breach of contract action over alleged misappropriation of a Chinese trademark registration. Before contacting LODHS the client company had had a default taken against it in Federal District Court. 

Result

After obtaining relief from default, LODHS was able to resolve the case to the satisfaction of the client.

Will Contests Cases

Will contest; financial elder abuse

Description

The firm participated as joint trial counsel in defending our client from challenges to will and trust instruments on the grounds of incapacity and undue influence. Our client, the sole heir and beneficiary of an estate valued at more than $30Million and was charged with utilizing undue influence by a sibling, where the parent had executed a number of wills and trusts disinheriting the sibling. The sibling contended the parent lacked capacity to execute the instruments and that our client had committed financial elder abuse. All claims were rejected by the Court.

Result

Result: The firm was successful in getting the Court to award roughly $2 Million in sanctions against the sibling for the entire cost of defending the contest.