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A recent Daubert case raised the issue of how closely a damages calculation has to reflect the corporate structure in order to be admissible.

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Pizzella v. Reliance Trust Co.

Court denies individual defendants’ motion to dismiss DOL’s claims that defendants breached duties as co-fiduciaries, violated a duty to monitor the co-defendant trustee, and knowingly participated in the trustee’s breaches; DOL’s complaint states sufficient facts to support claims, court finds.

DOL’s Valuation-Related Claims Against Individual Actors Survive Motion to Dismiss

Court denies individual defendants’ motion to dismiss DOL’s claims that defendants breached duties as co-fiduciaries, violated a duty to monitor the co-defendant trustee, and knowingly participated in the trustee’s breaches; DOL’s complaint states sufficient facts to support claims, court finds.

In re Panera Bread Company

In appraisal action involving sale of public company, court says sale process had “objective indicia of reliability,” justifying use of deal price for fair value determination; synergy deduction is appropriate to account for value from anticipated cost and tax-related savings due to merger.

Court Considers Deal Price Persuasive Indicator of Fair Value and Approves Synergy Deduction

In appraisal action involving sale of public company, court says sale process had “objective indicia of reliability,” justifying use of deal price for fair value determination; synergy deduction is appropriate to account for value from anticipated cost and tax-related savings due to merger.

Manichaean Capital, LLC v. SourceHOV Holdings, Inc.

In appraisal proceeding, Court of Chancery adopts petitioner expert’s DCF-based model for calculating fair value, making slight adjustment to expert’s size premium; on beta calculation, court finds respondent expert’s novel approach “does not survive judicial scrutiny” and raises Daubert issues.

Novel Beta Method Occasions Rebuke From Court of Chancery in Appraisal Case

In appraisal proceeding, Court of Chancery adopts petitioner expert’s DCF-based model for calculating fair value, making slight adjustment to expert’s size premium; on beta calculation, court finds respondent expert’s novel approach “does not survive judicial scrutiny” and raises Daubert issues.

Pizzella v. Vinoskey (II)

District court denies trustee’s motion for a new trial based on argument that Secretary of Labor lacked authority to pursue monetary relief against defendants; court says the plain language of the statute on which the DOL’s claims are based allows secretary to obtain damages on behalf of the ESOP.

Trustee’s Post-Trial Attack on DOL’s Pursuit of Monetary Relief on Plan’s Behalf Crumbles

District court denies trustee’s motion for a new trial based on argument that Secretary of Labor lacked authority to pursue monetary relief against defendants; court says the plain language of the statute on which the DOL’s claims are based allows secretary to obtain damages on behalf of the ESOP.

Coster v. UIP Companies, Inc.

In breach of fiduciary duty action, court says stock sale passes enhanced fairness review; appraiser valuing real estate investment services company before sale is eminently qualified and knowledgeable about industry; capitalized cash flow method “generated a reliable indicator” of company’s value.

Valuation Underlying Controversial Stock Sale Satisfies Highest Scrutiny

In breach of fiduciary duty action, court says stock sale passes enhanced fairness review; appraiser valuing real estate investment services company before sale is eminently qualified and knowledgeable about industry; capitalized cash flow method “generated a reliable indicator” of company’s value.

Kim v. Kim

Ohio appeals court upholds trial court’s spousal support determination based on husband’s average, rather than normalized, income, finding “equity did not require a double-dipping offset”; court agrees with sister court’s ruling in Gallo that applicable statute does not prohibit double dipping.

Ohio Court Affirms Facts of Case Don’t Require ‘Double-Dipping Offset’

Ohio appeals court upholds trial court’s spousal support determination based on husband’s average, rather than normalized, income, finding “equity did not require a double-dipping offset”; court agrees with sister court’s ruling in Gallo that applicable statute does not prohibit double dipping.

Papin v. Papin

High court upholds classification and valuation of husband’s investment management business, noting business consists of book of business, which can exist without owner, and owner’s skills and expertise, which are his separate property; proceeds from sale of book of business are community property.

Trajectory of Owner’s Investment Management Business Raises Characterization and Valuation Issues

A complex divorce case in front of the Idaho Supreme Court featuring an investment management business that the husband had set up before and sold during the marriage raised noteworthy issues about the nature of the business and the characterization and valuation of its various components (book of business vs. owner’s skills). A related flashpoint was whether the nonowner spouse was entitled to any appreciation (enhancement) in the value of the business that occurred ...

R.D. Clark & Sons, Inc. v. Clark

Trial court’s fair value determination in buyout dispute involving family business withstands appeal, including decision not to tax affect or apply majority and minority discounts; appellate court finds there is no controlling state law on the issues and upholds trial court’s findings on facts.

Courts Reject Tax Affecting and Use of Discounts in Connecticut Buyout Dispute

Trial court’s fair value determination in buyout dispute involving family business withstands appeal, including decision not to tax affect or apply majority and minority discounts; appellate court finds there is no controlling state law on the issues and upholds trial court’s findings on facts.

In re Emerge Energy Services LP

Ruling on plan confirmation, Bankruptcy Court finds debtor expert’s determination of total enterprise value of reorganized debtor more credible than unsecured creditors’ expert; in adopting debtor expert’s comparable company analysis, court calls choice of comparables set a “key value driver.”

Bankruptcy Court Calls Choice of Comparables ‘Key Value Driver’ in Expert Valuations

Ruling on plan confirmation, Bankruptcy Court finds debtor expert’s determination of total enterprise value of reorganized debtor more credible than committee for unsecured creditors’ expert; in adopting debtor expert’s comparable company analysis, court calls choice of comparables set a “key value driver.”

McLelland v. Paxton

In dissolution dispute, appeals court affirms trial court’s finding, based on plaintiff expert testimony, that dissolved professional LLC had entity goodwill at trial based, in large part, on ownership of three leases and operation of offices that doctors could use upon termination of partnership.

Washington State Appeals Court Adopts Rule on Entity Goodwill in Professional LLC

In dissolution dispute, appeals court affirms trial court’s finding, based on plaintiff expert testimony, that dissolved professional LLC had entity goodwill at trial based, in large part, on ownership of three leases and operation of offices that doctors could use upon termination of partnership.

IceMOS Tech. Corp. v. Omron Corp.

In contract dispute, court denies defendant’s Daubert motions, finding plaintiff’s experts are qualified based on extensive experience in relevant industry; experts could provide testimony relevant to surviving lost development support costs claim and their testimony is not unreliable as of now.

Plaintiff’s Projections Fail to Meet New York Test for Lost Profits or Lost Business Value

A breach of contract case in which the plaintiff asked for various types of economic damages is noteworthy for the court s extended discussion of what the plaintiff must show under New York law to make a case for lost profits. The court explained that the hurdle was particularly high for a new business or a business trying to break into a new market considering the company s lack of a financial track record. Damages must be ...

IceMOS Tech. Corp. v. Omron Corp.

In contract dispute, court says claims for lost profits and lost business value fail because, for both, plaintiff is unable to determine damages with reasonable certainty; relying solely on projections of future performance, without any proof of profit, is not enough under New York law.

Plaintiff’s Projections Fail to Meet New York Test for Lost Profits or Lost Business Value

A breach of contract case in which the plaintiff asked for various types of economic damages is noteworthy for the court s extended discussion of what the plaintiff must show under New York law to make a case for lost profits. The court explained that the hurdle was particularly high for a new business or a business trying to break into a new market considering the company s lack of a financial track record. Damages must be ...

Helen Ziegler Benjamin v. Island Management

In a family dispute featuring related closely held companies and claims of breach of fiduciary duty and mismanagement, court, based on financial testimony from plaintiffs’ expert, orders inspection of defendant company’s records, including general ledger, fee agreements, and executive compensation.

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