A Locke Lord team led by Mark Freel (Providence) represented a national consulting and advisory business owned by a client private equity firm in a decision that came after a six-day bench trial in the Commercial Division of the New York Supreme Court in Manhattan. Following an investigation in early 2018, conducted with the Firm’s assistance, Locke Lord’s client determined that a senior-level managing director in its New York office was misappropriating funds. The client terminated him for cause, and the employee filed suit in an attempt to secure substantial severance benefits, the appreciated value of his ownership units, and relief from his two-year non-competition obligations. The aggregate exposure to the client, including the critical value of the non-compete in the lucrative New York market, was substantial. Following trial, the court completely validated the client’s grounds for the cause of termination, dismissed all of the plaintiff’s claims, upheld the non-compete provisions, and awarded the client judgment in the amount of the misappropriated funds, plus interest and all of its attorneys’ fees and costs. Additional team members included Andrew Braunstein (New York).
Posted on July 12, 2018