Mayhall Fondren Blaize

business litigation Archives

Business litigation financing is a growing investment industry

A surprisingly vibrant industry in Louisiana and nationwide involves the activity of investing in commercial litigation lawsuits. Although it has been generally considered unethical for outside investors to have an ongoing financial stake in the profits and losses of law firms, that principle has given way to an exception that allows for the outside funding of highly costly business litigation suits. Because the suits are expected to obtain substantial monetary recoveries, it arguably makes sense to allow for outside interests to invest through companies that specialize in such transactions.

Business litigation riddles top officers, shareholders of Uber

Lawsuits involving the owners of large business entities comprise a distinct area of litigation in Louisiana and other states. Shareholders often join together to sue the corporate entity that they assert is not being run in a proper or legal manner. In some instances, this kind of business litigation can get quite personal, as when major shareholders sue the CEO personally for mismanaging the company and/or regarding any number of fraud or concealment claims.

Business litigation includes conflicts over trademark intrusions

Louisiana, like all other states, gets to host a variety of business litigation claims. The litigants may be companies of all sizes, from struggling startups to massive, established pillars of an industry. In one recent business litigation case in another state, the giant candy-maker, Mars Inc., is facing a drawn-out trademark dispute with a small chocolate maker consisting of one person.

Patent infringement is a source of business litigation cases

Patent infringement litigation is a continuing source of significant business litigation cases in Louisiana and nationwide. A jury award and a court's ruling in a case from another state is an example of how recoveries in patent infringement cases can be compelling for the winning party. A medical instrument company received a $248.7 million award from a federal judge who decided to triple the jury's award due to willful and egregious infringement by the defendant company in this business litigation case.

Business litigation asserts fiduciary breach in stock selections

The Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) is a complex federal law that governs employee retirement plans nationwide, including in Louisiana. Oil and energy companies have the same potential as companies in other industries to be drawn into ERISA lawsuits, which can cover a wide array of business litigation issues. For example, an employee of the Marathon Petroleum Co. recently filed a class action lawsuit against the employer for putting the stock of Marathon Oil Corp. in its workers' retirement plan.

Business disputes may be resolved prior to business litigation

Louisiana has plenty of business litigation disputes between oil and gas companies. Because business litigation is usually a drain on a company's resources and valuable time, early resolution of such disputes will often be a goal for both the disputing businesses and their attorneys. This may be even more important where the parties have an ongoing business relationship.

Business Litigation is spawned by loosening of federal rules

When oil and gas disputes turn into court cases, such matters may be categorized under the broad generic subject called business litigation. Such disputes are on the rise nationwide and in Louisiana. That may be due at least partially to the loosening of regulations by the federal administration and the response by environmental groups to counter with increased business litigation.

Crude oil supply contracts may get mired in business litigation

Disputes over crude supply contracts are a mainstay of the oil and gas industry in Louisiana and other states. It is not that every contract goes bad, but the literal volatility of the industry often creates situations that may not have been fully considered prior to the fact. In business litigation over such contracts, misinterpretation of the provisions may often occur based on the natural attempt of the parties to mold the meaning to their desired outcome.

Mediation may be used where business litigation is unnecessary

Many business in Louisiana and other states are turning to mediation as an alternative to deciding disputes through traditional court litigation. The expenses and long timelines make business litigation a last resort for most prudent business enterprises. Mediation is a form of alternative dispute resolution that is designed to be an informal process in which a neutral mediator tries to guide the parties to a settlement without the use of compulsion.

Business litigation entails a continuing process of negotiations

Business disputes in Louisiana and elsewhere follow a general procedural pattern in many instances. The disputing entities often engage in preliminary negotiations, either independently or through their chosen counsel. If the dispute is not settled in the early stages, then one or both parties will take the matter to court by filing a business litigation case. Business litigation is not generally intended to be a straight path toward trial; instead, the attorneys for each disputing side will continue to pursue a settlement resolution as the litigation progresses.