Arbitration and Mediation

This week’s New York Business Divorce offers short summaries of three recent decisions of interest by Commercial Division Justices Melvin Schweitzer, Carolyn Demarest, and Marcy Friedman in which the courts addressed interesting issues concerning shareholder standing to seek removal of a director and dissolution of a wholly-owned subsidiary; venue in dissolution proceedings; and application of CPLR 205’s savings provision to the statute of limitations in a dissolution case.
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Appraisal experts provide critical testimony in valuation proceedings. Court rules govern pretrial expert disclosure. In this week’s New York Business Divorce, you can bone up on the disclosure requirements and read about cases in which the parties paid a price for failing to comply with disclosure requirements.
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This week’s New York Business Divorce examines a recent decision by Justice Carolyn E. Demarest in Pisane v. Feig, where the court confirmed an arbitration award stemming from a petition for judicial dissolution of several affiliated companies, in which the arbitrator decided which of the two parties was entitled to buy out the other, and at what price.

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Buy-sell agreements in shareholder agreements are supposed to avoid — not foment — litigation over the value of the interest being redeemed or sold. Matter of Grande’ Vie, LLC, decided last month by the Appellate Division, Fourth Department, tells a cautionary tale of a buy-sell provision gone wrong. Learn more about this important topic in this week’s New York Business Divorce.

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An unusual shareholders’ agreement leads to unusual, concurrent arbitration and judicial proceedings in a shareholders’ battle for control of a Brooklyn restaurant business. Read about Justice Carolyn Demarest’s recent decision in Boz Export & Import v. Karakus in this week’s New York Business Divorce.

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Courts generally will enforce broad arbitration clauses in shareholders’ agreements to compel arbitration of corporate dissolution disputes. This week’s New York Business Divorce highlights an interesting, recent decision by Justice Ira B. Warshawsky in which he denied a request to compel arbitration of a dissolution petition based on limiting language in a separate termination clause in the shareholders’ agreement.

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Shareholder and operating agreements typically contain provisions restricting the right to transfer stock or membership interests. A recent decision by Justice Ira Warshawsky in Verderber v. Commander Enterprises Centereach, LLC, in which he refused to grant a preliminary injunction enforcing a transfer restriction, prompts this week’s New York Business Divorce to examine the ancient rule against unreasonable restraints on alienation.

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