Case StudiesReal Estate Litigation
We represented a large private homeowners association in Queens, which was sued by a private tennis club located within the community. The tennis club claimed that the homeowners’ association annual fees were capped by a 1913 deed restriction. If the caps were enforced, the homeowners association would not have been able to continue to operate, and the private community would have been required to deed the streets and sidewalks back to the city. We defended the homeowners association, and obtained a decision by the appellate court that the 1913 caps were not enforceable and that the homeowners association was entitled to the full amount of the assessed fees.
We represented a foreign software company which had provided confidential information to a U.S. software company as part of discussions concerning a possible merger. After the U.S. software company obtained the foreign company’s confidential information, the U.S. software company terminated the discussions without any explanation, and failed to pay the breakup fee or return the confidential information. We sued the U.S. company in federal court and obtained a favorable settlement, under which the U.S. company paid the breakup fee plus additional monies, returned or destroyed the materials, and agreed to a joint press release making positive statements about the foreign company.
We represented a businessman in a lawsuit against one of the largest shipping companies for damages caused by the shipping company, after the shipping company shipped the businessman’s materials, even after it was asked by the local government authorities to hold the shipment. As a result of the shipment, criminal charges were filed against the businessman, but later dropped. After a four-week jury trial in California, the jury entered a verdict in the businessman’s favor, awarding him more than $4 million for lost value of the shipment and emotional distress damages. On appeal, the California appellate court and the California Supreme Court upheld the jury verdict.
Trusts & Estates Litigation
We represented four of the eight adult children of a wealthy Mexican businessman, who left a large bank account in New York, held in the name of one of his companies. The other four adult children, who were signatories on the account, asked the bank to disburse the money in a manner that was not consistent with the father’s will. We obtained an emergency court order freezing the New York bank account under a constructive trust theory, pending the outcome of the probate proceeding in Mexico. The court order was later confirmed on a permanent basis by the court. Subsequently, the eight children entered into a favorable settlement, which included resolution of the Mexico probate estate proceeding.
We defended certain lenders who were sued in federal court under an alleged fraudulent conveyance theory for more than $6 million, after they made mortgage loans to a car leasing company, which subsequently went bankrupt. The minority shareholders of the car leasing company brought a lawsuit against the car leasing company and its owners, and obtained a judgment against the car leasing company, after they were frozen out of the company in a reverse merger. The minority shareholders then pursued a fraudulent conveyance action against the lenders, relying upon the judgment. We successfully got the lawsuit dismissed at the federal district court and federal appellate court levels, on the ground that the judgment against the company was void.
We represented a downtown monthly fashion and entertainment magazine in a lawsuit by its former top ad salesperson. In the lawsuit, the salesperson attempted to sue the magazine under the New York labor laws, which provide for individual liability, attorney’s fees and additional penalties. We successfully showed that the labor laws did not apply to the salesperson. We also obtained favorable rulings blocking the salesperson’s efforts to obtain unwarranted discovery. Soon after, we negotiated a favorable settlement.