Breach of Contract
- 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. Applehead was represented by Steve Susman, Jacob Buchdahl, and Rebecca Tinio.
- Susman Godfrey negotiated an amicable resolution to a licensing agreement dispute between 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." Tracey Technologies Corp. was represented by Geoffrey Harrison and Kenneth Marks of Susman Godfrey.
- 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. The Susman Godfrey lead attorney on this matter was Trey Peacock.
- In April 2006, Lyondell Chemical Company announced that it had settled claims brought on behalf of Lyondell-Citgo Refining L.P. against PDVSA, the Venezuela national oil company, for breaching a long-term crude supply contract. The settlement terms are confidential. The case was filed in the Southern District of New York and arose under New York and Venezuelan law. After defeating PDVSA's motion to dismiss the case under the "act of state" doctrine and completing extensive discovery in the United States and Venezuela, Susman Godfrey obtained an adverse inference against PDVSA for refusing to produce documents, and, following that discovery sanction, filed a motion for summary judgment on behalf of the plaintiff. The case settled while that summary judgment motion was pending. Susman Godfrey attorneys who worked on this matter were Lee Godfrey, Vineet Bhatia, Erica Harris and Brooke Taylor.
- In February 2006, Susman Godfrey successfully defended Nevada Gold & Casinos, a publicly traded gaming company, in a suit brought against it by Rinaldo Corporation in Bakersfield, California, alleging tortious interference with contract and prospective economic advantage. The plaintiff sought more than $400 million in alleged damages. Following extensive briefing and oral argument, the Court granted Nevada Gold's motion for summary judgment on all claims. Nevada Gold was represented by Susman Godfrey attorneys Robert Rivera, Joe Grinstein, Nick Daum and Suyash Agrawal.
- In May 2006, after winning three motions to compel, Susman Godfrey settled a case for plaintiff Cannon Interests-Houston against Kinder Morgan Texas Pipeline, L.P. Susman Godfrey represented plaintiff Cannon Interests-Houston in this multi-million dollar breach of contract action, involving the natural gas industry. The case was settled for $4.25 million, with $2.83 million net to the client. The Susman Godfrey attorneys who worked on this matter were Erica Harris and Rick Hess.
- In June 2005, Susman Godfrey won a multi-million verdict in Florida State Court in the case of Florida Health Plan Holdings vs. HIP New York. The jury also found that punitive damages were warranted — a very unusual jury finding for commercial cases in Florida courts. The trial in Fort Lauderdale ran three and one half months. The case settled the day after this verdict — and during the second phase of the trial when the jury was considering the amount of punitive damages that were warranted. The confidential amount of the settlement was highly satisfactory to our client. Susman Godfrey attorney who worked on this matter were Ken McNeil, Jonathan Ross, and John Turner
- In January 2004, Susman Godfrey won a jury verdict in a high profile case for Apache Corporation against two affiliates of Dynegy, Inc. We alleged that the Dynegy affiliates breached 18 different gas purchase contracts by failing to account and pay for over 400 million cubic feet of gas that Apache produced and delivered from its wells. After a five day trial, the jury found for Apache on every issue. The jury found that the Dynegy affiliates breached all 18 of the contracts, willfully engaged in deceptive and unfair trade practices, and the jury rejected the Dynegy affiliates' counterclaims.
- In July 31, 2003, Susman Godfrey obtained a jury verdict in state court in Dallas for our client, Cavalry Investments, against EquiCredit of America, a Bank of America subsidiary, in a breach of contract and interference with contract case. The jury awarded $5 million for breach of contract, $15 million for interference, $25 million in punitive damages and $1.9 million in attorney's fees.
- In September 2003, Susman Godfrey won an appeal in the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, and persuaded the Fifth Circuit to reinstate a $120-plus million breach of contract claim against Lucent Technologies, Inc. The Fifth Circuit held that the federal district court erred by dismissing claims brought against Lucent by the former owners of Herrmann Technology, Inc., a company Lucent had purchased with stock then worth over $400 million. The Fifth Circuit held that the former owners properly had stated a claim for breach of contract and remanded the claim to the district court for further proceedings. We settled the case ten months after the Fifth Circuit issued its ruling. The amount of the settlement is confidential.
- 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.