Representative Business Litigation Matters
- Noncompete agreement enforced against hair stylist who sought to take hair formulas and client list from her former employer.
- Wage Act defense — Defended an individual who had several convenience stores and was paying their employees by cash. An employee brought a Wage Act claim seeking payment for overtime and treble damages for attorney fees. Case was successfully defended by demonstrating that the claimant was involved in money laundering.
- New Bedford Superior Court — Successfully defended a former employee of an electrical company who started his own commercial electrical business. Defended the case based upon the failure of a noncompete agreement that was reasonable in its scope and length.
- Successfully defended an attempt to terminate retirement benefits of a former police officer based upon his acknowledgement of being involved in a bank robbery and drug dealing. Former police officer had been granted immunity by the state and federal courts. Therefore, it was demonstrated that he was never convicted of a crime and as a result his retirement benefits could not be terminated.
- Essex Superior Court — Represented a landowner who filed an action against his neighbor for cutting down trees along the boundary of their respective properties. Through expert testimony, attorney Bardi was able to demonstrate the age of the tree and its value. The adjacent homeowner who cut down the trees defended through his homeowners insurance, giving approximately $30,000 to the landowner.
- Woburn District Court — Boundary dispute — Successfully defended a niece of an aunt who claimed that her niece built a home that encroached upon the aunt’s property. Demonstrated through a surveyor and expert testimony that the home did not encroach upon the aunt’s property.
- Suffolk Superior Court — Boundary dispute. Represented plaintiff/homeowner who brought an action against his neighbor who had planted tall trees and bushes on the client’s property. Demonstrated through surveillance video the neighbor had removed boundary markings that clearly demonstrated that the plantings had been deliberately planted on the client’s property. The defendant was required to remove all plants as well as a fence that had also been improperly placed on the client’s property.
- Federal Court, Western District of New York, Buffalo — Successfully defended a parts distributor where the plaintiff alleged the defendant distributed hundreds of thousands of dollars of defective parts. Case resolved at mediation for a nominal amount.
- Norfolk Superior Court — Represented a former shareholder of a business who was accused of violating the terms of a buy-out agreement and a noncompete agreement. Dismissed with the plaintiff paying our client’s legal fees.
- Middlesex Superior Court — Defended private investigators who had been hired to monitor the activities of an individual expected of wrongdoing. Charges of trespass and harassment were rejected, and the private investigators were found not to be responsible for any damages.
- Attorney Bardi successfully represented the interests of two businesses against a breach of an oral contract action filed against them by another corporation in a jury trial at the Business Litigation Session of the Suffolk Superior Court. The plaintiff alleged that the defendant agreed to the terms of a loan and had defaulted on the repayment of the loan at an interest rate of 40 percent per annum, an illegal usurious interest rate. After thorough examination of the witnesses, attorney Bardi successfully demonstrated that there was in fact no oral contract as the parties did not reach a “meeting of the minds,” and therefore there was no breach of contract or damages. The money that was received for the alleged loan may be paid back if and when the client is financially able to do so.
- Attorney Bardi successfully defended majority shareholders of a closely held corporation against a derivate action filed against them by a minority shareholder. The minority shareholder alleged that the majority shareholders benefited from disguised dividends, that they breached their fiduciary duty and that the minority shareholder had been frozen out of the business. Attorney Bardi filed a motion to dismiss the action, arguing that an arbitration provision included within corporate governance agreements compelled the minority shareholder to bring the action in arbitration and not in state court. Also, attorney Bardi argued that the derivative action itself was procedurally defective. The judge agreed with attorney Bardi’s arguments, dismissed the derivative action and ordered that all other claims must be brought in arbitration. The case settled shortly thereafter.
- Attorney Bardi successfully defended a manager — not just once, but thrice — against a derivative action filed by the minority stockholders. The shareholders alleged that the manager breached his fiduciary duty, misappropriated and converted funds, and froze them out of the business. Attorney Bardi filed a motion to dismiss the action, arguing that the shareholders did not have standing to bring a derivative suit. The judge agreed with attorney Bardi’s argument and dismissed the claim. Subsequently, the shareholders filed an amended derivative complaint against the manager and included another defendant. Attorney Bardi filed a motion to dismiss, arguing that the shareholders still did not have standing. Attorney Bardi also argued that the shareholders failed to timely serve the new defendant. Once again, the judge agreed with attorney Bardi and dismissed the derivative claims. At this point, the shareholders took their last bite of the apple and appealed the dismissal. The shareholders tried to claim this was not a derivative suit. Attorney Bardi argued by presenting the facts of the case and using the shareholders’ own words against them. In attorney Bardi’s words, “the shareholders’ claims walked like a derivative suit, looked like a derivative suit and quacked liked a derivative suit.” The Appeals Court agreed with attorney Bardi and affirmed the dismissal of the shareholders’ suit. The Appeals Court’s decision also addressed a particular issue and made a distinction in the law. The Appeals Court addressed the issue of weighing adverse interests of members and their right to vote in authorizing a derivative suit. In this case, the Appeals Court would not treat the ownership interest of the defendant’s mother as adverse solely because of their mother-son relationship.