Paul (Junior) Teutul has reason to dance after a decision by the appeals court earlier this week, reversing a lower court’s ruling that would have forced him to sell his 20% interest in Orange County Choppers to his father, Paul (Senior) Teutul, at a price to be determined by the court.  Teutul v. Teutul, 2010 NY Slip Op 09248 (2d Dept Dec. 14, 2010).

As I previously reported here, the lower court’s April 2010 ruling enforced Senior’s exercise of a buyout option contained in a January 2009 letter agreement that had temporarily patched up the father-son business relationship, and avoided cancellation of their television deal with Discovery Channel, following Senior’s on-air firing of Junior.  The court enforced the option notwithstanding that the buyout price was expressed in terms of “fair market value as determined by a procedure to be agreed to by the parties as soon as practicable (emphasis added).”  The solution to the parties’ inability to agree on valuation procedure, the court concluded, was for the court itself to step in and determine the fair market value of Junior’s shares.

The court’s valuation was put on hold pending Junior’s appeal of the decision.  I previously reported here on the argument of the appeal last October, in which Junior argued that the option was an unenforceable agreement to agree.  As reported, the lawyer for Senior, who was there defending the lower court’s decision, drew a series of skeptical questions from the four judges who, this week, handed down a unanimous decision accepting Junior’s argument.

In its decision, the appellate court acknowledges case precedent relied on by Senior, in which courts have held that “a price term of ‘fair market value’ in and of itself may be ‘sufficiently precise’ in that generally fair market value can ‘be determined objectively.'”  Senior’s argument falls short, however, because in his letter agreement with Junior, the parties   

went further and expressly agreed to later agree on a procedure for determining the shares’ fair market value. Significantly, in the context of a closely held corporation such as OCCHI, “in which ownership is generally vested in a small group of stockholders and in which the shares are not usually salable” (Kaye v Kaye, 102 AD2d 682, 686-687), any determination as to the fair market value of these shares involves a certain degree of inexact valuation and subjectivity, making the procedure by which fair market value is determined of particular importance (id.).

The court’s decision also distinguishes the circumstances in Marder’s Nurseries, Inc. v. Hopping, 171 AD2d 63 (2d Dept 1991), another case relied on by Senior, which upheld a court’s authority to break a “stalemate” in the agreed procedure for determining fair market value by making the determination itself.  Here’s how the court explains the distinction:

While the parties in Marder’s Nurseries v Hopping had actually agreed to a procedure for determining fair market value, albeit a “flawed” or “problematic” one (id. at 70, 73), here, the parties merely agreed to later agree on a procedure for determining fair market value, in which case it cannot be said that the parties intended to create “a complete and binding contract.” 

The appeals court accordingly reverses the lower court’s order and grants Junior summary judgment declaring that the option agreement “is not valid or enforceable.”

So what happens next?  I wish I knew the answer, but I don’t, mainly because I have no information about Orange County Choppers’ business, balance sheet, profitability or prospects.  As I previously reported, in 2009 Senior engaged his own appraiser to value OCC’s shares; the appraiser apparently concluded that Junior’s shares had zero value.  It’s a fair inference that Junior begs to differ, if nothing else based on the subsequent protracted and presumably expensive litigation battle.

Junior has asserted a number of counterclaims against Senior seeking damages for alleged self-dealing and waste of OCC assets, and also demanding access to company books and records.  Will Junior expend the necessary resources to prosecute the counterclaims, or might he use them as currency for a more favorable buyout settlement?   Or, as a 20% shareholder, might Junior bring a proceeding for judicial dissolution of OCC under Section 1104-a of the Business Corporation Law?  Doing so would require him to prove “oppressive” or “fraudulent” conduct by Senior, or that Senior is “looting” the company.  If Junior did petition for dissolution, Senior could avoid having to contest the issue by electing to purchase Junior’s shares for “fair value” under BCL Section 1118, in which case Junior would be right back from whence he just escaped, namely, a valuation proceeding in front of a judge. 

Enough speculation.  We’ll all just have to stay tuned.

Update January 18, 2011:  I’m advised that the trial judge in the Teutul case, Justice Lewis Lubell, no longer sits in Orange County as a result of which the case was reassigned to Justice John McGuirk who held a status conference on January 10, 2011, and is scheduled for another conference on January 24.  No other information is available at this time.   

Update January 25, 2011:  The Court website shows that a conference with Justice McGuirk was held yesterday, January 24th, and the next one is scheduled on February 10th.  A reader comment posted today reports talk of a buyout settlement coming out of the New York IMS show.  I can’t confirm.   

Update February 8, 2011:  An article in today’s NY Times states that the litigation-injected father-son dispute has been good for American Chopper’s TV ratings.  Good to know the Times is only about a year behind the news.

Update February 12, 2011:  The Court website shows that another conference with Justice McGuirk was held on February 10th, and another one is scheduled for February 23rd.  The frequent conferences hint at ongoing settlement negotiations, but only the parties and their lawyers really know.

Update February 21, 2011:  An astute reader alerted me that the court’s calender now lists the case as “disposed” which translates as settled.  No other details are available at this time.

  • Ron

    Wow, that’s a biggie. I can hear Sr yelling and throwing a tantrum right now, and I’m 100 miles away.

  • Debra

    So the lawyers involved were self serving when drafting this january letter. It draws no conclusion but will prove to provide only the law firms with extended income through litigation of the letter.
    An enforceable private IOU has more meat than that pathetic letter.
    PAM Reply: Assuming Senior was the one pushing for the buy-out, it’s conceivable that Junior’s lawyer out-manuevered Senior’s lawyer by inserting language he knew would be unenforceable. We’ll never know. I do know from experience the difficulty of negotiating complicated agreements under a tight deadline, and the imprecise, on-the-spot language compromises that sometimes get made to smooth the deal.

  • Ron

    From the timeline on the page below.
    “The day before the [letter] agreement was finalized, Junior’s lawyer sent Senior’s lawyer a revised draft agreement in which he deleted the latter’s proposed language appointing a specific business appraisal firm (“MPI”) to value Junior’s OCC shares and substituted the language that appears in the final version, referring to the determination of fair market value by “a procedure to be agreed to by the parties as soon as practicable.”
    I’ll bet Sr’s lawyer is in hiding.

  • Leroy

    This is why it is important to get the right kind of Lawyer for the Job. Given the stakes involved and the nature of the lawyer Jr hired I would have expected Sr’s lawyer to suggest he bring in a specialist.
    PAM Comment: I would not be so quick to assume that Senior’s lawyer was in over his head. The agreement, which included important issues unrelated to the buyout, was completed under great time pressure. Sometimes lawyers and clients agree to compromise language to get the overall deal finished. Also remember, Senior’s lawyer convinced the trial judge that the buyout was enforceable, so the issue was never free from doubt on either side.

  • Scott

    Thanks for your great coverage of this story.

  • PGM

    I have bought and sold many businesses and have lost buying a number of businesses because I always insist on negotiating my OUT before I negotiate the IN. I have owned public businesses as well as many private businesses and FMV for a private business is much different than one that is public. I have never had a dispute with my partners in 30 years of business using this method, but as my attorneys have pointed out I have lost a few very good deals because I could not get an agreement on how to break up the relationship. It is truly hard to imagine that OCC is worth Zero. If I was Paul, JR I would ask for a reciprocal PUT/CALL and then see if the value is still zero.

  • KellyH

    Excellent and well written posts regarding this break up. After all the internet hoopla, reality TV editing and RumInt its good to get a real glimpse of what’s actually happening on the legal side of things.
    So much for the ‘wow, they’re (the Teutels) doing this for the rating’ school of thought.

  • Brenda

    I’m sure Jr. would rather this be over with however I think Sr. is crazy to try and make people believe OCC is worth zero. If that is the case then if I was employeed by Sr. I would be looking for another job. I like what Jr. said on the radio to Sr. that if his 20% was worth zero, he would buy his remaining 80%. Sr. should man up and do the right thing. He likes the conflict and what a sad picture of Sr. shooting off Jr. from a ramp on a motorcycle. If I worked there I would be looking for another job. The truth of it is it took both of them to get to where they are today. Sr. should stop thinking he did everything and Jr. did nothing. I hope this ruling stands in favor of Jr.

  • joelc

    The corporation is essentially worthless. It is heavily leveraged and has little volume in business as compared to Harley/Davidson. The principal financer of the business is the Discovery Channel. The interesting twist is that Jr. is countersuing Sr. on charges of fraud and theft of corporate assets and wants an outside party to oversee OCC finances to prevent future fraud from occurring.

  • LJ

    Three comments:
    1. Thank you for the clarity of you coverage of this topic.
    2. It is important to remember that the valuation of OCC was done using the value “frozen in time” of the date that Sr. exercised his option. That value “frozen in time” would not include any assets of OCC that had been transferred to other business of private entities owned by Sr. before that “frozen in time” date.
    3. There is the history of value manipulation of O.C. Ironworks (owned by the Teutuls)which in 2003-2004 transferred both assets and employees to Orange County Ironworks LLC so as to declare O.C. Ironworks bankrupt.

  • Kevin

    This proves Senior’s valuation to be correct. By the time this case is decided, the company will have been bankrupted by the legal bills. Junior will be lucky to net anything after legal bills if he wins. The curse continues.

  • The RedHeaded Rambler

    Was this deal done at the same time they did that deal on OC Iron Works and is this deal in any way related to it ?
    The transferring of the iron works company almost sounded like the old “Texas Two Step” type of thing.

  • Frank

    Jr. and Sr. seem to think they made OCC, WRONG!!!! It was Discovery and TLC that made OCC popular. The majority of the money OCC makes comes from the sale of OCC hats, t-shirts and other OCC apparel, not the cheap choppers they make. OCC would have gone out of business if it wasn’t on tv. The same can be said for Paul Jr. and his shop.
    American Chopper had poor tv ratings when it was cancelled in February. The lawsuit saved American Chopper, it was the only reason Discovery decided to bring back American Chopper.
    I don’t care who wins the lawsuit, they are all IDIOTS, and I hope both shops fail, and American Chopper is cancelled permanently

  • Julie in Austin

    There are an infinite number of ways to determine fair market value, some of which even make sense. I think Jr’s comment about Sr selling his 80% for $0 hints at what he had in mind — making sure Sr wasn’t able to stack the process against him. That’s a perfectly valid strategy and I think Sr is going to have a hard time getting around that.

  • Ted Williams

    Senior’s [offensive term deleted] factor is only exceeded by his oversized ego. This is a guy who was almost tearful when he gave a motorcycle to Cody on national tv and then apparently took it back. He’s a divorcee and has no relationship with any of his three sons. No wonder he’s so in love with his dog. It’s truely pathetic and sad. Only a matter of time before he drives his girlfriend away. What a sad, figure he really is.

  • ray

    If senior took a narcissism test he would be off the charts,me me me,my feelings my conditions.When they say some people shouldn’t have children…Pauls name should be at the top of the list. I can see having a dispute with one child.but when all three children have disowned you,its not hard to figure out what the problem is!

  • JC Royce

    Sr. has always been in denial and believes he is being taken advantage of by his sons. Not to say the sons are not innocent for some of what has happened, though think Sr. has instigated most of what has happened because he is unable to control his feelings. He has some deep issues haunting him, and not all these feelings can be attributed to his family. As with any child, they want approval from parents who care, though it appears that has never happened as it relates to Sr. and doubt at this point there will ever be a true reconciliation between him and his children. He has lost their respect – Sr. also has a daughter who was on the earlier episodes and must wonder if she is also estranged from him, because she is never mentioned. Have to wonder where Senior’s mother stands on this issue because she appeared on the earlier episodes as well, and seemed to be closer with her grandsons, than with her son Sr. It’s unfortunate though believe Sr. will most certainly die a very lonely person.

  • Bill

    It is my opinion that the business and family began to disintegrate with the decision to build the new OCC complex.
    It is difficult to see how OCC’s business income is sufficient to support the huge capital investment and increased structural costs associated with the build, particularly in a poor economy. Questionable capital transfers from Orange County Iron works (now restructured) and lawsuits from OCC’s suppliers are clear indicators of a business in trouble.
    With Discovery/ TLC income gone, OCC will need to restructure its business which is currently little more than a financial shell. Even if by some miracle Sr. and Jr are able to put aside their dysfunctional behavior and agree to terms, it will be very difficult to keep OCC’s doors open.
    Sad, but I believe the Teutel family and OCC’s future depend on each other …

  • Ron

    It seems to me that Jr and Sr’s real problems started with Dad’s failure to share the business with his partner, Paul Jr. I know Sr built bikes in his basement, but it wasn’t OCC until Jr partnered up, created that great OCC logo and started building theme bikes. His creativity is what got Discovery interested. I remember the beginning when Sr would just sit around the shop complaining how tough he had it and spend most of his time hanging up the phone whenever it rang.
    He got super rich and didn’t hesitate to flaunt it while he continued to treat Jr like some kind of grunt who had to work all night then be there at 7 A.M.
    I hope the court gives Jr everything he deserves before Sr steals it all for himself.

  • Bob

    There seems to be a pattern of using corporate assets for personal benefit. Employees are shown working on Sr., Jr. and Mikey’s homes. Sr. is shown taking home three full sets of SNAP ON tools given to OCC. As Leona Helmsley learned, the IRS takes a dim view on failure to distinguish between personal benefit and corporate assets.
    Judging by Sr’s home and the fact that so many employees have been shown working on it Jr may well have a good claim of waste and fraud.

  • jay

    I agree 100%. If they were never picked up by TV, that business would have certainly failed, due to the economy, and lack of exposure. I live by them, and trust me, it’s NOT a good area to be in the private sector for manufacturing bikes. Just hope they all put it away for a rainy day, cause the end is near. I know of HUGE Harley dealerships that have been in business for decades that have gone under, and trust me when I tell you the quality of OCC and Harley is night and day. Personal preferences aside, I rode 2 of their “assembly” bikes, and literally watched things fall off, and one of the bikes caught fire at a gas station due to faulty wiring. They must have a huge mortgage on that building also. I have heard they put over 7 million into it, and that was on the show at the closing. I agree with Bob also, the IRS will have a field day with them if they keep pushing it. This is only the small lawsuit that family is involved in OC Ironworks did some real shady name transfers and then bankruptcy. I don’t wish anyone problems, but I wonder if this has all been settled already and edited for TV and milk it for what they can til they are done with them

  • Ron

    It seems to me that Jr has the talent to make it on his own. I think Dad’s attitude finally gave him the motivation to actually grind it out. Sr doesn’t understand the time it takes to CREATE a theme bike. The company gets $150,000 for a bike, and he wants to take parts off the shelf, slap it together and ship it out. He’ll be back to lying on the floor in his basement real soon if he doesn’t get his head straight.

  • willow

    I don’t blame Sr. for nothing, except giving his lazy son 20% was his only mistake, he should have fired him way before that day. The Discovery Channel crew itself said Jr. was late everyday; disappeared very often, basically blowing off work on a daily basis. Everybody knows Vinny and the rest of the OCC employees worked on the bikes; finished the bikes then Jr. would show up, make it look like he did all the work….the discovery channel saw that happen. THAT IS WHY PAUL JR DESIGNS WAS LATE ON THEIR VERY 1ST BIKE…BECAUSE JR. WAS NOT AT HIS OWN BUSINESS MAKING SURE A DEADLINE WAS MET.

  • Gerald Theriault

    It is my opinion that Paul Sr has been abusive toward his son’s. This has been witnessed by his behavior toward them, as the TV program has unquestionably shown us all. Also by statements made by Mikey wishing his father could just once give him credit. Paul Sr’s own sons have indicted their father as being a poor specimen of a father. Using his sons for his personal gain and now wanting to cheat Paul Jr out of his fair share of 20% ownership in OCC. I give Paul Jr very much credit for sticking up for himself against the tyrant of a father he has, also for his undying heartfelt support for his brother Mikey. I believe Paul Jr will make a go of his new business, more power to him.
    As for Paul Sr I wouldn’t give a damn to see him and his business go down the tube. He is one of the most self centered, ego-centric people I have seen in a long time. A muscle flexing, chest beating, bully of the first order, who really lacks true leadership qualities, instead using his position to lord over those who benefit him most. While all the time whining, wimping, crying about how bad HE is being treated. Continuing to harass, denigrate, humiliate his sons. Truly a man without conscience or sense of fair play, who thinks, “I’ll kick your ass is leadership.”

  • GetItRightGuys

    Let’s clear up the inaccuracies…
    1. American Chopper is still on Discovery and has garnered higher ratings since the firestorm started.
    2. Paul Jr. Designs first bike was Anti-venom and was produced on time. The second bike was GEICO, and it was produced on time. The third bike was produced on time. So was the fourth. PJD was one day late with a 4-wheeler, because Jr. made the mistake of letting Odie run the show without guidance. that 4 wheeler was neither a bike nor the first thing out of his shop.
    3. Jr. designed all of the great OCC bikes (Black Widow, Fire Bike, I Robot bike). Vinnie is the mechanical genius who ran the wires and debugged the drive train. Rick is the metal genius who pounded things into submission. Jr. made use of his highly talented employees. It does not make him lazy to do so. You don’t treat your best talent like an assembly line grunt.
    4. OCC has a gigantic building in foreclosure, and is facing vendor collection suits. PJD is profitable. OCC sued Jr. a second time because their fourth bike was pitched by OCC a year before and not sold, and they said that Jr.’s manager stole the customer. But there was no customer. OCC is reduced to litigation.
    The people have spoken. Congratulations to Paul Jr.

  • Near

    Previews for the next episode, it would appear Sr. is again suing Jr. Just based on the short excerpts it sounds like the “next” lawsuit is in regards to the FARO bike Jr. built and some non-compete agreement between Sr. and some ex employee.

  • Matt

    Get real people. Senior is trying to screw Junior out of what is rightfully and legally his. Junior made OCC what it is – end of story. Discovery wasn’t interested in Senior’s designs! Who was? Old School bikes are just that….OLD! And they’ve been done to death for Christ’s sake. Junior tries to design and fabricate NEW ideas, NEW themes, NEW styles. He is not afraid to TRY. And he is not afraid to FAIL either, and THAT is the biggest difference between him and his egotistical, pig headed, know all but knows nothing, jackass of a father. Three sons who have disowned him? Who is truly in the wrong? His only friend was Gus and now he doesn’t have him either. What a sad, lonely and broken old man he is. He has gotten exactly what he deserves.

  • Fred

    It’s a really sad story, but unfortunately it happens all too often…little guy gets famous, fame goes to the head, and next thing you know your life never the same. I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if the old man strokes out…I don’t wish it on him or anyone else, but he’s been looking more frail with each show. I don’t envy any of their fame or money.

  • OCCsucks

    OCC in foreclosure, what a shock!!! It only shows the low quality and demand for the “custom, hand made” bikes they make.
    PJD and his piss poor bike shop will go under as will because most veiwers don’t care for the builds. They are only interested in the lawsuits. Jr does not want camaras in the courtroom. If no camaras are allowed in the courtroom, then Discovery will not have footage for tv. No footage for tv, then Dicovery will not have a tv program. Without a tv program, PJD will not have the exposure. Without exposure PJD will have no income. With no income, PJD will go out of business.
    Three sons, Two POS bike shops and one a**hole of a dad will finally be taken off the air. LET THE LAWSUITS FLY!!!

  • Ken

    Question: How much does Discovery/TLC pay? Do any of the cast members get paid?

  • Ron

    Ken, in the original Sr and Jr got $100,000 each per episode. Vinnie got $5,000. Not sure what Mikey got. It seems Sr had control over what others in the cast were paid. Cody’s lawsuit claims he is owed $240,000.

  • bill z

    I can tell by these posts that there is a mix of professionals of all ages, and then there are the others. Jr and Mikey fed off their dad’s sucess as a metal fabricator (metal/welding business). Jr is a good designer, but no one is indispensible as jr and some of the other posters believe. Jr was constantly late, or a no show, camera/show hogging jerk.
    mikey was the comic relief with obviously a drug dependancy of some type. Lost his house, out of money, failure as he had been. Mikey wanted a contract with occ got it and couldn’t abide by it. they both were a couple or leaches. the only problem was jr was innovative, but acted like some kinda a diva. For you professionals, would you company/corporation tolerate, or hire people with that behavior.

  • todd

    I can’t figure out why they can’t look at the books as to income and expenses and come up with an income. Then come to an agreement on buyout amount from that figure. Rental properties are purchased using a similar formula. Shouldnt be that hard. Jr should also be compensated for the logo HE designed, thats not up for debate, it was his and now is known as Orange County Choppers worldwide. Look at Sr’s employees, alot of turnover up there, what does that tell you?

  • Ron

    Word out of IMS is that they settled and Sr now owns OCC by himself. I guess they are both happy enough, because Sr said they are now communicating via email.
    If that is true, the cases would be withdrawn and we won’t know the details.

  • Ron

    I have 2 questions for Peter. Why is the first Judge no longer sitting in Orange, and what do the rapid conference dates indicate to you?
    PAM: I believe Justice Lubell was elected and originally served in Westchester County and was only temporarily assigned to Orange County. Nothing unusual about that as far as I know. The rapid conferences could indicate a number of things, including disputes over pretrial disclosure and/or ongoing settlement discussions.

  • Jake

    On Jan. 25th, Bill Z asked if our “compan[ies]/corporation[s] [would] tolerate, or hire people with that behavior”?
    Well, I certainly wouldn’t. And I’ll throw Sr. into this question, too. He seems to have a good work ethic, and he’d be the only one I’d hire, but only to sweep floors and take out the trash. I certainly wouldn’t put him any kind of position of control or responsibility, not with his horrible “management style.”

  • Ron

    Peter, since OCC and OCCHI are identified as Delaware corporations in Jr’s countersuit, would that affect the application of BCL Section 1118? It seems to be a NY state law, so I’m wondering what state laws would apply. Would Jr have equal rights under either state law to petition to buy Sr’s 80%?
    Have you seen anything on the court calendar reguarding Sr’s suit against PJD concering Joe’s NCC?
    GE capital has moved to foreclose on the OCC building. If Sr has manipulated the books to lower the companies value, could that put him in a bind with the mortgage holder?
    Sorry to male you work on a Sunday, but I find the web that has been woven quite interesting.
    Ron: You raise an excellent point that escaped me. The buyout dispute concerns Jr.’s 20% interest in OCCHI which, as you correctly note, is a Delaware corporation and therefore is subject to Delaware law as to its internal affairs including dissolution. Delaware does not have a dissolution/buyout statute like NY’s. Also, even if Jr. sought dissolution under Delaware (common) law, he’d have to bring the action in Delaware Chancery Court since a NY court will not entertain dissolution of a foreign corporation.
    I’m not aware of any law in either state giving Jr. the right to buy out Sr.’s 80% interest.
    By the way, I think you’re correct that Jr.’s counterclaim identifies the subsidiary, OCC Inc., as a Delaware corporation, but the NY State Department’s website lists it as a NY corp.
    Sorry, I’ve seen nothing regarding a suit by Sr. vs. PJD and I don’t know enough about GE’s real estate financing to comment.

  • Bill Sowerby

    With the prospect of finances from the Discovery Channel disappearing, it must have been clear to the Teutuls that the gig was up for OCC, its building and its employees. If I subscribed to conspiracy theories, I would wonder if Jr’s biz was started so assets and employees from OCC could be diverted into it before bankruptcy closed OOC’s doors. Asset manipulation by Orange County Iron Works shows that the Teutuls have previous experience in this area. Of course, this would mean that all the Teutul family drama on Discovery was just a well orchestrated ruse – No way, right? Does anybody have insight into how Jr. was able to finance his new business without any apparent funds ?

  • Ron

    Bill, I doubt it. Sr cashed out of OCCI when it was in ruins. OCC clearly isn’t. Sr and Jr were both getting about $100,000 per episode just before the split. Jr also gets about $250,000 in profits per year for his 20% of OCC, Sr gets close to $1 million per.
    Jr’s shop is very small compared to OCC, and doesn’t have much of a business beside theme bikes. PJD gets almost all of it’s work from companies buying TV time from Discovery, and they get a bike as part of the deal. If you watch, you’ll see companies like Intel getting tons of airtime, while Faro got a lot less. Intel may have paid discovery $10 million, while Faro paid just $3 million for the airtime. Those aren’t factual numbers, but you get the idea.
    OCC is in a far better position to survive when the show ends. They have real world customers and PJD is just strating out.
    Discovery has a nice little business going here. They will do whatever it takes to keep it going, and so will Sr. He already forked over 20% of ‘HIS’ company to get Jr to come back and keep the show going.

  • Monte

    Look, OCC would have probably folded long ago if not for “American Chopper”. So, it doesn’t really matter if Junior built the bikes with his “bare hands”, both are STARs of the show. So, it may have been Senior’s signature on the checks, but Junior help build the OCC brand just as much as his father, and Mikey.


    I LOVED THE SHOW MY HUSBAND AND I HAVE WATCHED SINCE THE VERY BEGINNING. We are in our late 60s and it was and is something we can watch together and we enjoyed it. We have always thought senior needed to have his ass kicked! Now that said I have always thought senior needed to be told that to treat Paul Jr. with no respect was sick and it made him look very bad! But we loved Vinnie and Micky and kept watching. WE still watch it and enjoy the new shop Paul Jr. has started.

  • Ron

    They are scheduled on 2/24 for their 4th Status Conference in a row.
    Reading tea leafs: Jr tweeted on the morning of 2/11, the day after the latest court appearance, that “Today’s gonna be a good good day” and later posted pictures of a “lobster feast for the shop.”
    Who knows. I just hope they settle everything and get back to business.

  • pete

    it’s funny how everybody has a different opinion on the show and sr. and jr. i think both need each other for the show to be what it is, without that crazy walrus (sr.) it wouldn’t be the same. I think jr. deserves all the recognition his dad has never given him, without him sr. wouldn’t be as big as he is now so patch things up and grow up before someone dies then they’ll regret it. i think it will take grandma dead to bring them back. that’s so bad to get to that

  • Ron

    I just looked at the court calendar, and the next date has changed to 2/23 with the status now showing ‘disposed’. The appearance outcome says ‘Other Final Disp. Pre-Note’. It sounds like they settled.

  • Nancy T

    I am not a lawyer, not even a spokesperson for one 🙂 But there was mention of the fact that the only real money generated by OCC was the sale of OCC logo items. That said, Jr should rec. a fair payment for his share. He alone, repeat ALONE designed that logo. That logo is what everyone knows. The logo is the money in all simplicity. I find it highly ironic and amusing when Sr and all of the Jr bashers are all runnning around wearing HIS logo on their hats and tee shirts.

  • John Herbert

    -Wow! My compliments on your
    absolutely great coverage and discussion of this. I found your site about a year ago while looking on the web for AC news and I was floored then by how well you had it covered!
    I am at home taking care of a sick wife and just happened to catch a Chopper re-run. I thought of you and decided to see what’s up with the case and , of course, was not disappointed by your work!
    Great job!!

  • Jack Johnson

    I agree w/Peter… Great Job covering the story.

  • Bill Partridge

    I would rather have another ’72 Norton Commando (blue) with the Combat engine than anything I’ve watched the Teutuls build.

  • Ron

    ’72 Norton Commando? There’s nothing like a bike that need’s a crate of spare crank-shaft’s main-bearing’s to make it through it’s warranty.

  • Bill Partridge

    That’s certainly not my experience. You may need to alter your driving habits. Only problems I had over a period of ten years was a clutch cable and battery

  • Ron

    I’m not talking about my experience, I’m talking about widely know Norton history of how they ended up in financial ruin by 1975, even though BSA tried to rescue them in 1973.
    The “Combat” engine was released in January 1972, with a twin roller bearing crank. Reliability immediately suffered, with frequent and early crank-shaft main-bearing failures, sometimes leading to broken crankshafts. Older engines had used one ball-bearing main bearing and one roller bearing main bearing but the Combat engine featured two roller bearings in a mistaken belief this would strengthen the bottom-end to cope with the higher power-output. Instead the resultant crank-bending caused the rollers to “dig-in” to the races, causing rapid failure.
    Well, you got the color right. I like blue.

  • Bill Partridge

    Like I said, I’d choose a ’72 Norton Comando with the Combat engine over the occ machines. You want an occ POS ??? Have at it.

  • Ron

    Given a choice between just those 2, I’ll take the POS that will get me down the road. The late AMC Nortons were craptacular, that’s why many ’72 Commando’s for sale have the reliable, lower output ’73 BAS Combat engine.
    Why someone would dream about owning the worst engine Norton ever put out is beyond reason. I guess you’re just a push and fix kind of guy.
    For the record, I wouldn’t buy a theme bike built by anyone. It’s just not my thing.

  • Bill Partridge

    Push and fix kind of guy I am not. A guy that drives sensibly and maintains his equipment, I am. Not once did I have to push, fix or be hauled in.

  • Fred Stewart

    I think Paul Sr. is slimy to try to take any portion of the family business from his son. They are both creative but clearly Paul Sr. is a bully. He looks and acts like a bully. As a teacher, I know exactly what a bully looks and acts like. Furthermore, Paul Sr. has great difficulties seeing his son as a highly creative builder that rivals all the other highly creative builders including Paul Sr.
    Isn’t it interesting how the the big tatooed Paul Sr. has such difficulty expressing kindness, gratitude and bravery. It takes a brave man to let go of your personal needs of validation in the interest of saving your family. There is no way that Paul Sr or Junior can or will be as successful on their own as they would be together. Get over it Paul Sr.! Man up and be a big boy. Tell you son you’re sorry whether or not you are. Save your family because YOU are the only one who can. When you are on your death bed your motorcycles and your business won’t come to visit you. Junior will because he just will. You have been given the gift of life and like many others you can only see what you want and not what you should.

  • Bill Clines

    i think they are all smarter than we think
    i do not believe that the show cancellation followed quickly by the Sr. v. Jr. lawsuit was just a coincidence
    they know the show means everything to their business and they found a way to keep it going
    afterall they did reach a point where both decided they would be better off working separately and they did need a 3rd party to help decide the buyout
    and if the added drama helped the show … well then that’s every reality show ever made
    i bet they are all on a island somewhere going, wow people really believed all that drama

  • Ron

    Problem is, Jr wouldn’t let cameras in court so the lawsuit really hasn’t been the story.
    The feds seized the records of some quack doctor in Florida and Sr has spent over $50,000 on illegal steroids over the past 8 years.
    That pretty much explains everything that has gone on in Teutul land.

  • Marv Heinert, CPA/CFF, CFE

    Junior will not be back to where is just was. In the business valuation world and the courtroom “Fair value” and “Fair Market Value” are not the same thing. I suspect Junior’s stock value got knocked down because of the use of minority discount adjustment and a marketability discount adjustment used to arrive at fair market value. Even with those adjustments, if OCC has any net book value, ZERO is not the correct answer.

  • Ron

    After winning the appeal, it wasn’t about fair market value anymore. Sr had to make an offer Jr liked because Sr didn’t have any way of forcing Jr to sell, and Sr himself said he couldn’t deal with working FOR JR any longer. Apparently it was a good price, because Sr started selling a lot of his expensive toys. Coincidence? Maybe.

  • Brian Richardson

    Watching pretty much every episode & to think that Sr thinks all off occ’s success comes from what he has done & his accomplishments is a friggen joke! He is the pioneer yes but the entire crew has made occ what it is today. The fact that 3 out of 3 of his sons have disowned him & he looks like death warmed over since tells me if he wants his health to improve he needs to pull his head out of his ass & be a dad & not a boss! Thanks!

  • Jay

    I think that anyone w/ an iota of common sense knows OCC isnt worth ‘$0.00’ It just shows senior is either a scumbag scamming out of what he should pay, or crooked which has been suggested w/ the whole Iron Works thing. He needs to pay his son for the shares he wants, PERIOD

  • Charlie

    This is a masterful marketing scheme. The ratings were falling after 8-10 years and the lawsuit, with all of the cameras conveniently located to catch the fights leading up to it, ratcheted things back up. I’m watching again.

  • harley rider

    this season of jr vs sr. is nothing but a scam. one can tell that as soon as sr. lost his case he was then going to make up with his kids. last nights show when sr. went to look at mikeys “god awful” art tells you where he actually sits with his kids. i would bet a tank full of gas that a season finale show will be “have they made up or not?” scenario. the show money is the only thing keeping both camps afloat. soaring overhead for man, machinery and lawsuit has nearly bankrupted both parties. guaranteed they will get back together, get rid of most of the personnel and live happily ever after. and that’s a good thing.

  • GiantBryan

    I started watching again a few weeks ago, I remember that Sr, started OCC to help Jr over come his drug addiction, (addiction has been involved with Sr, Jr, and Mikey). A few shows ago Sr had said that he spent New Years day with his youngest son, that he hadn’t talked to in 3 years, one thing remains consistent of time…Sr’s lack of communication with his sons (his daughter lives near Rochester NY) is the show scripted? Are both earning money and building bikes? The OCC website is still selling bikes and swag.

  • Tim

    As a person who has been around the bike world his whole life, It floors me that all these intelligent people actually pick sides on who is responsible for OCC’s success. It isnt SR’s buisiness savvy, it DEFINATLEY isnt Jr’s ” creative genious ” noe is it the bikes. Discovery is the responsible paty for making them all millionaires. Anyone who knows the history of the show will remember that the very first episode in which the T.V. cameras caught one of their infamous fights on tape, then, when Discovery showed the fight on tv, the Teutels were FURIOUS at Craig Pilligian, the producer and actually called him and threatened a lawsuit for showing it. THEN after the overnight ratings were in, and the website got over 400,000 hits after the intial episode, the Teutels and Discovery, realized they may be sitting on a goldmine thus, American Chopper the series was born.
    That being said, as i stated I have been in the bike world my whole life, and I have personally ridden 2 OCC production bikes and they are overpriced junk. The Corporate bike builds are merely rolling billboards as most are unrideable. Watching the new season only reinforces my opinion that PJD CANNOT survive without the show, as they have yet to build the first bike for a regular customer. OCC with the HUGE overhead and debt they have in that building, may not survive either.
    The thing that made the show and buisiness what it is was the fact that mostly non bikers and or the novice weekend warrior types watched the drama, and admired the shiny trinkets on the bikes so OCC were able to sell their overpriced junk bikes to people that really knew very little about bikes. When the economy tanked, and there wasnt anymore easy credit and easy money available, the average person could no longer shell out 40k plus for entry level bike from OCC. BOTH PJD and OCC will go down. OCC may survive but not in that building with that overhead.
    At the end of the day though, the Teutels have already made their millions so whatever happens they are sitting pretty. The ones I feel sorry for are the employees because as is the norm in the buisiness world, its the employees who will ultimatley suffer

    • cziz


  • Tim

    As far as the buisiness dealings of these parties go, If you do some investigative work on some of the shady dealings that ALL of the Teutels have taken part in over the years, It pretty obvious whats comming next. Rumour has it it that SR is planning on letting his current space go into foreclosure, which in turn will force OCC into bankruptcy. It is rumoured that he then plans to build a smaller shop NEXT to the current building. If I were a betting man, Id say SR is planning on the same shell game that he, Jr and Dan were involved in with OC Ironworks. They use the bankruptcy laws to protect certain assets, then open the same business with a different name, thus bilking their creditors once again. Im no lawyer, but is anyone on here knowledgeable about what happened with the Iron works? What I have read and gathered about that deal was that there was some REALLY shady dealings that went on with that. It seems if you are rich, then make poor buisiness decisions, the bakruptcy laws seem to allow the rich to screw their creditors without any loss of their personal fortunes. ( Donald Trump comes to mind ) If anyone who knows the laws and is familiar with these cases please answer how that would work Id appreciate it.

  • Jake

    Paul Sr. is a waste of skin human being. He was a nasty mean drunk for years. He finally got sober then his “roid rage” behavior emerged. He is definitely not a role model or a parent for anyone.

  • Joseph Carper

    I figured from the start of this whole thing that SR. would would lose for the fact he was trying to be what kids would call being an in Indinan giver you can’t give someone somthing than when the raltionship go’s bad take it back! If Jr. decides he wants to sell his 20% to anyone he wants to if the price is right it donsn’t have to be Sr. The fact is father can’t admit that son help him bulid the occ name fact! Things can’t get better untill Sr. quits beeing blinded by his own ego and give credit were credit is do his own sons! The way things got were both sides fault because of simple foolish pride.

  • Bryan

    Lifes to short to be fighting like they are.My father and I were partners in agriculture some years back. Times turned bad and we lost everything. It started a big fight between my father and I and we did not speak for over a year. During all this my fathers diebetes started to turn really bad. Lost a big toe then a leg. That wasnt the worst part then the kidneys started shuttimg down. During most of this time we werent speaking at all. To make a long story short im very glad I decided it was time to bury the hatchit. Shortly after us talking again I lost my father to his diabeties. I just really wished I had the time back that I lost because you never know whats going too happen im life.

  • Supa Mo

    I’m split on this issue. On one hand I agree with Jr. His father is hard to work with. Sr. gets on Jr for his work habits but as you watch the show id does not seem like Sr. does much around there either. jr. was 25-26 when the show started and has always worked for dad and I’m sure he feels he should get a pass because his dad owns the company. But why does Jr. feel as though he should be paid for the 20% he owns when his dad gifted him the 20%? I really wonder if all this was their way of squeezing 2 more seasons out of the TV show

  • @SupaMo when you form a company and you hand out ownership you cannot just take back the ownership without paying a fair and reasonable price. Honestly if you watch the show, Sr is just a plain old @ss

  • Hoss

    Someone mentioned it earlier, Paul Sr suffers from narcisstic personality disorder and he has it BAD!!!!!
    Google it!
    Good luck to Paul Jr, I wish him the world for putting up with the mental abuse for as long as he did!

  • Bob

    I’ve done a complete 180 on this deal.A friend of mine that had done some work with OCC before Jr. was canned told me Jr. is an arrogant young man and a complete prick. Sr. was tough but wasn’t a total jerk. That has caused me to look at this from a different angle and while the family is absolutely disfunctional, I don’t think Sr. is as deserving of the verbal abuse I and others have been giving him. I’m sick of Jr’s crying and sniffing. I think Sr. was seriously sick and tired of Jr’s work ethic, had enough and fired him. Having owned a business my self and after hearing what my friend said I understand things better now.
    I hope the son’s and the dad get back together. It won’t make good TV but families should support each other. Money does crazy things to people.
    If you are a fan of Jr’s. please don’t write a nasty response. I don’t personally know either of these guys but still have my opinion.

  • Both were at fault.  Jr.’s work habits were appalling and Sr. does not know how to manage nor express anger.  Sr. carries the heavier burden of fault as a father as he is responsible for his children’s upbringing and apparently Sr.’s alcoholism definitely had a deleterious effect on the family.  Jr. needed to grow up and drop the arrogance and dad needed to learn to express his anger productively.  Sr. should have paid the 20% at a reasonable value and 0 is certainly not reasonable.  He should never have sued.  Sr.’s dealings with the bank shows he has little regard for ethics and morality.  He signed a contract with the bank and did not honor it.

  • The show has ended and they have faded away. One day you will read about them when something happens, usually bad, that is all news people would want to report. They all made a ton of money and my guess is they will do a complete 180 and end up in a small garage building and selling special order bikes. Theme bikes will be history as they where used as a cheap commerical for companies, 150k for an hours time on TV mentioning your company, that was a bargin. No company will pay that now without TV exposure. And that huge building they had, it will be vacant in a year or so.

  • Jimmy Faley

    Senior is a bully its no wonder he’s got no relationship with any of his sons