Business Disputes

Breach of Contract

  • In 2017, Susman Godfrey client, Wellstat Therapeutics, was awarded an estimated $70 million against BTG International, Inc. in a pharmaceutical contract dispute in the Delaware Court of Chancery.  In the lawsuit, Wellstat sued BTG over the marketing of Vistogard®, a life-saving drug designed to serve as an antidote for over-exposure to certain types of chemotherapy for which Wellstat developed and obtained FDA approval.  Wellstat signed a distribution agreement with BTG that obligated BTG to commercialize and market the drug over a 10-year period.  Under the agreement, BTG was supposed to use “diligent efforts.” At conclusion of trial, the judge ruled in favor of Wellstat, finding that BTG had breached the agreement in various ways.  Further, he found no validity to BTG’s claims. 
  • 2014, Susman Godfrey client Wade Johnson signed a favorable confidential settlement ending six years of hard fought litigation against a prominent investment bank. Mr. Johnson had signed a finder’s fee contract entitling him to fees in the event of investment in or acquisition of a start-up financial services company. In a AAA arbitration, Susman Godfrey overcame arguments that Mr. Johnson was an unregistered broker-dealer and that his indirect introduction did not entitle him to fees under the contract’s terms. Following an arbitration Award granting Mr. Johnson both a flat fee and a going-forward percentage, Susman Godfrey was forced to engage in extensive litigation regarding the terms of the Award in the New York Supreme Court on cross-motions to vacate and confirm the arbitration award. Susman Godfrey prevailed in the trial court, and the case settled shortly after Susman Godfrey argued the case on appeal.
  • In 2010, Susman Godfrey obtained a summary judgment in New York Supreme Court in a breach of contract action against Ronald O. Perelman brought on behalf of Applehead Pictures, a movie development company, to enforce Mr. Perelman's obligation to make capital contributions to the company. Susman Godfrey then successfully defended that judgment on appeal to the Supreme Court's Appellate Division, First Department.
  • Also in 2010, the Tenth Circuit affirmed a $17 million dollar verdict for breach of contract on behalf of a class of California telephone consumers against AT&T that Susman Godfrey tried for six weeks before a jury in federal court in Kansas City. Prior to trial, Sprint reached a settlement with the plaintiff class worth $25 million in phone cards.
  • Susman Godfrey negotiated an amicable resolution to a licensing agreement dispute between client Tracey Technologies Corp. and Advanced Medical Optics, Inc.  The terms of the resolution are confidential, except that the parties issued a joint press release in which they announced that "AMO will have a world-wide, non-exclusive license to Tracey Technologies' ray tracing wavefront technology under a new licensing agreement."
  • Susman Godfrey successfully defended ABB Lummus Global, Inc. and its joint venture with Heerema Zwindrecht, which built and delivered a $700 million offshore exploration and development platform, in a multi-million-dollar construction dispute with one of the project's subcontractors. Plaintiff sought over $5 million for alleged breaches of the parties' subcontract. The case was arbitrated before a three-member panel in June 2006 pursuant to the UNCITRAL rules. Susman Godfrey fully prevailed for its client. The panel rejected all of the Plaintiff's claims and Susman Godfrey succeeded in obtaining an award of attorneys' fees and costs for its client.