A shareholder dispute spanning seven years of litigation in New York and Delaware came to an end last week with the latter state’s highest court’s refusal to rehear the case. This week’s New York Business Divorce highlights two of the many issues raised along the way: whether Delaware law recognizes a common-law claim for minority shareholder oppression, and the validity of a reverse stock split and cash-out of the minority shareholder that deprived her of standing to pursue derivative claims.
Continue Reading Business Divorce Case Reaches End of Long and Winding Road

In the 25 or so years since New York adopted its Revised Uniform Limited Partnership Act, last month’s trial court decision in Levine v. Seven Pines Associates, L.P. may be the first to address issues attendant to a post-merger, dissenting limited partner appraisal proceeding. It’s featured in this week’s New York Business Divorce.
Continue Reading Decision in Dissenting Limited Partner Case Directs Fair Value Hearing, Grants Discovery

New York Business Divorce proudly presents its seventh annual list of the past year’s ten most noteworthy business divorce cases, along with short summaries and links to prior posts on the featured cases. Happy New Year!
Continue Reading Top Ten Business Divorce Cases of 2014

The statute governing LLC mergers requires a member vote at a meeting to be held on at least 20 days notice. In Slayton v. Highline Stages, LLC, the majority members used written consents in lieu of a meeting to approve a freeze-out merger, which the frozen-out minority member challenged. Did she succeed? Find out in this week’s New York Business Divorce.
Continue Reading No Meeting, No Vote Required for LLC’s Freeze-Out Merger Approved by Majority’s Written Consents

This week’s New York Business Divorce presents the first of a two-part examination of Justice Shirley Kornreich’s must-read decision in Zelouf International v. Zelouf, a dissenting shareholder appraisal proceeding in which the court rejected application of a marketability discount.
Continue Reading Zelouf (Part One): Marketability Discount Rejected in Fair Value Proceeding

Decisions in lawsuits brought by minority members challenging LLC mergers are rare finds. This week’s New York Business Divorce highlights a recent decision in just such a case by Manhattan Commercial Division Justice Melvin Schweitzer, in which he denied a motion to dismiss an action seeking to set aside a merger involving a realty management company organized as a three-member LLC. You won’t want to miss it.
Continue Reading Action to Enjoin LLC Freeze-Out Merger Goes Forward

A shareholder’s derivative action alleging misappropriation and waste by the controlling shareholders, filed in 2009, was scheduled for trial earlier this month. About three weeks before trial, the controlling shareholders initiated a freeze-out merger for the specific purpose of defeating the suing shareholder’s standing to maintain the action. Did it work? Find out in this week’s New York Business Divorce.
Continue Reading Court Permits Freeze-Out Merger on Eve of Trial of Shareholder Derivative Action

Freeze-out mergers are well known in the corporate venue, but did you know they can also be used for limited liability companies, and that they can trigger appraisal rights? This week’s New York Business Divorce examines a decision by Manhattan Commercial Division Justice Charles Ramos in a rare lawsuit prompted by an LLC freeze-out merger.

Continue Reading Freeze-Out Merger and the Limited Liability Company

Stock valuation junkies can get their fix in this week’s New York Business Divorce, as it revisits the issue of discounts for BIG — as in built-in capital gains taxes — in the appraisal of C corporation shares under the fair value standard, prompted by a decision last week by a Manhattan appeals court in a case called Matter of Mandelbaum.

Continue Reading Dissenting Shareholder Stock Appraisal Triggered by Freeze-Out Merger Raises Issue of Post-Merger Tax Consequences for C Corporation with Built-In Gains