Matters

Appellate Victory Dismissing Former Employer’s Claims against Asset Management Executive

Herrick secured a complete appellate victory in its defense of a hedge fund industry veteran against claims asserted by an asset management firm, where the client had formerly been employed as joint CEO. In its ruling, the Appellate Division, First Department unanimously reversed, with costs, the trial court’s order denying our motion to dismiss the complaint. In its opinion, the appellate court agreed that the plaintiff’s breach of contract, promissory estoppel and unjust enrichment claims, arising from an alleged oral agreement, were time-barred.

Real Estate Brokerage – Employment Dispute

Representation of a real estate brokerage in an action by a former employee for age discrimination and breach of oral contract promising severance. The Court dismissed the breach of contract claim, finding the oral contract too vague to be enforceable.

Fitness Center – Employment Litigation

Representation of a New Jersey fitness center in its severance agreements and employment disputes, including an action for wrongful termination based on disability.

LED Display Manufacturer – Employment Issues

Represented an LED display manufacturing company in employment issues, restrictive covenant enforceability, and contract disputes.

National Importer and Distributor – Counsel on Employment Matters

Representation of a major national specialty food importer and distributor in all aspects of its employment disputes, including contracts and risk management.

New York City Restaurant – Employment Issues and Audit

Representation of a famous New York City restaurant in employment issues and a Department of Labor audit.

Assisted Living Facility – Employment Issues and Audit

Representation of an assisted living facility in employment issues and a Department of Labor audit.

Real Estate Investment Company – Counsel on Employment Matters

Representation of a real estate investment firm in all aspects of its employment disputes, including contracts and risk management.

Business Services Company – Employment Issues

Representation of a provider of maintenance, cleaning and security services to New York City businesses in employment disputes and risk management issues.

Broker/Dealer – Non-Solicitation Dispute

Representation of a registered broker/dealer in defending an action for a temporary restraining order brought by a competitor seeking to restrain our client’s brokers from contacting their respective clients.

Manufacturer – Shareholders Derivative Action

Representation of a manufacturer in defending against 15 claims of fraud and breach of an employment agreement by a shareholder employee. The trial court dismissed all of the critical claims in the case, and the case settled on the day of trial for its nuisance value.

Garment Contractors – ERISA Pre-Emption Litigation

Representation of a group of garment contractors in a successful challenge on ERISA pre-emption grounds to a section of New York State Business Corporation Law.

Law Firm – Employment Discrimination Litigation

Representation on appeal of a prominent law firm in its defense of a lawsuit by a contract partner for sex discrimination and retaliation. The Appellate Division reversed the trial court and dismissed the case.

Asset Management Company – Employment Issues

Representation of one of leading independent asset management companies in its defense of a wrongful termination action claiming religious discrimination, and in a separate action claiming discrimination based on disability. We continue to represent the company in all aspects of its employment disputes, and in risk management issues.

Ward v. Helmsley – Employment/Real Estate Litigation

Representation of the former COO of Helmsley Enterprises in a suit against Leona Helmsley related to an improper firing, breach of an agreement to sell 60 coop apartment units, and breach of a confidentiality agreement. This litigation received intensive publicity, with a front-page article in The Wall Street Journal, and articles in the New York Post and New York Daily News. Lead counsel Ray Hannigan was interviewed on Fox News and was a frequent "Boldface Name" in the New York Times. See Boldface Names, The New York Times (July 24, 2002).

Real Estate Management Company – Precedent Setting Decision in Wage & Hour Action

Successful defense of a real estate management company and its principal sued by a former residential janitor and two alleged former laborers at New York City properties managed by our client. The plaintiffs claimed minimum wage and overtime violations under the Fair Labor Standards Act and New York Labor Law, as well as related common law claims. The court granted, in substantial part, our motion to dismiss, striking 9 of the plaintiffs’ 12 claims in one of the first decisions to interpret the minimum wage and overtime provisions under New York law and the Minimum Wage Order for the Building Service Industry as they relate to residential janitors.

Music Company Executive – Breach of Contract

Obtained dismissal of action alleging breach of employment contract and fraud against a music executive sued by a major record label claiming the client used a multimillion dollar contract negotiated with the label as leverage to obtain a promotion with his current employer, another leading music company.

Major NYC Children’s Clothing Retail Chain – Employment Class Action

Represented children’s clothing retail chain and its founders in a class action alleging failure to pay overtime and other violations of state and federal labor laws, including claims for violations of the Family Medical Leave Act, discrimination based on disability, harassment and retaliation. Herrick was able to settle the dispute quickly on terms favorable to our client and without any admissions of wrongdoing.

Employment Discrimination Claims

Organizations in defending employee claims of discrimination brought before the New York Division of Human Rights, and the New York City Commission on Human Rights.

Private Equity Firm – Breach of Contract Claims

Defending a global life sciences private equity fund, several related entities and individual defendants in a federal lawsuit brought by a former general counsel and partner alleging breaches of certain partnership and employment agreements.

National Retail Chain – Pre-Trial Dismissal of Claims Under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and The Fair Labor Standards Act

Obtained pre-trial dismissal of claims against a national retailer brought by a former employee under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and The Fair Labor Standards Act, and attendant state law claims for malicious prosecution, negligence, punitive damages, false arrest and abuse of process.

Successful Defense in Multi-Plaintiff Litigation Alleging Fraud, FLSA and Civil RICO Violations

Defended individuals and related corporations affiliated with a global network of yoga studios in a highly publicized lawsuit in Arizona federal court in which more than two dozen plaintiffs asserted claims including fraud, undue influence, unfair and deceptive business practices, emotional distress, FLSA violations and civil RICO violations. Following a ruling dismissing the majority of claims, this litigation was ultimately terminated when all remaining causes of action asserted in an amended complaint were either dismissed by the court or withdrawn by the plaintiffs.

Medical Device Company – Raiding

Representation of a medical device company in avoiding litigation threatened by a competitor over our client's hiring of several of the competitor's employees.

Medical Device Company – Employment Contract Litigation

Representation of a medical device company, and two individuals in a litigation brought in New Jersey state court by a competitor. The plaintiffs claimed that our clients had violated restrictive covenants in two former employees' contracts, and sought injunctive relief and damages. The Court denied injunctive relief, and the case settled before discovery with no payment by our clients.

Inter-Dealer Brokerage Firm – $500 Million Raiding Case

Represented the affiliate of a billion-dollar inter-dealer brokerage firm in a large "key employee raiding case" brought by a competitor whose stock market valuation declined 24% (approximately $450 million) on the day following our client’s hire of approximately 20 of its credit derivatives brokers and employees. Following an intense oral argument by Herrick and other firms aligned with our client, a New York Supreme Court denied the plaintiff’s motion for a temporary restraining order and later denied a motion for preliminary injunction in rulings which allowed the subject employees to work for our client. The dispute then moved to a FINRA arbitration where we defended hundreds of millions of dollars in claims. After more than 240 hearing sessions, the matter was fully settled and all claims withdrawn.

Garment Manufacturer – Employment Litigation

Represented a prominent garment manufacturer in all aspects of employment law, including action by former employees claiming discrimination based on perceived sexual orientation and a hostile work environment.

Real Estate Technology Company – Employment Issues

Representation of a company specializing in data and analytics in the residential real estate industry in a lawsuit by a former employee claiming wrongful discharge on the basis of gender discrimination and sexual harassment. We also represent the company in all aspects of its employment disputes, including contracts and risk management.

Architecture Firm – Discrimination Claim

Representation of large architecture firm in all aspects of employment disputes and risk management issues, including defense of suit alleging gender discrimination.

Network Technology Company — Wage/Hour Class Action

Successful representation of a network technology company in litigating and settling a putative class action lawsuit brought by network technicians based on an alleged failure to pay prevailing wages and benefits on publically financed construction projects.

Residential Healthcare Facility – Wage/Hour Class Action

Representation of a nursing and residential health care facility in a wage and hour collective and class action lawsuit alleging violations of federal and state labor laws. This litigation was settled on terms favorable to our client.

National Energy Supplier – Wage/Hour Class Action

Negotiated a favorable settlement on behalf of a national energy service company, avoiding protracted litigation in a wage and hour class action lawsuit alleging violations of federal and state labor laws.

FINRA Employment Arbitration

Representation of a broker-dealer in a complex employment arbitration brought by six former employees seeking over $10 Million in collective damages. This FINRA arbitration proceeded for 60 sessions, including 32 hearing days, and resulted in a virtually complete defense verdict for the firm, including for attorneys' fees. The award was confirmed in its entirety by the Southern District of New York.

Private Bank – Restrictive Covenant Claims

Secured a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction on behalf of an international private bank to enforce non-competition and non-solicitation restrictive covenants against a team of private bankers, responsible for $4 billion in assets, who breached obligations when they resigned en masse to join a competing bank. Following an evidentiary hearing, the court fully enforced the restrictive covenants and enjoined the defendants until the expiration of the non-competition and non-solicitation periods.

Executive – Restrictive Covenant Claims

Successful defense of an executive against claims by his former employer, a multinational technology and consulting corporation, seeking to enforce a 12-month non-competition agreement following our client’s resignation to pursue a position with a competitor. After three weeks of intensive expedited discovery, and in the midst of an evidentiary hearing on a motion for a preliminary injunction, the parties were able to reach a confidential settlement that allowed the client to join his new employer within 40 days of the suit's filing.

Agricultural Commodities Specialist – Restrictive Covenant Claims

Advised a leading agricultural commodities specialist on the recruiting and hiring of an executive subject to a 12 month non-competition agreement from his former employer, a leading provider of over the counter derivatives products.

Apparel Manufacturer – Successful Defense in Breach of Contract and Unpaid Compensation Action – Successful Prosecution of Breach of Contract Claims

Successful defense of a leading manufacturer of coats and outerwear in a dispute related to the acquisition of the assets of a business, and an employment agreement between our client and the business's former owner. The court dismissed plaintiffs' complaint, which asserted claims for breach of the asset purchase agreement and employment agreement, and granted our client's counterclaims for breach of those same agreements. Following the trial court's determination of liability in our client's favor, we reached a favorable settlement regarding damages to our client.

DataTreasury Corp. – $100 Million Dispute with Former COO

Successful defense of DataTreasury Corp. in a 41-day bench trial arising from claims by the company's former Chief Operating Officer that he was entitled to exercise certain stock options granted to him during his tenure. We helped obtain a decision dismissing all of the former executive's claims based on his disloyal conduct in trying to usurp business opportunities coupled with his failure to properly exercise the options, and defeated the plaintiff's multiple post-trial motions.

Non-Profit Organization – Wrongful Termination and Discrimination Claims

Representing a New York City non-profit organization in a dispute with former employees claiming wrongful termination and discrimination based on age and sexual orientation.

Healthcare Services Provider – Alleged Violations of FLSA and Connecticut Wage and Hour Laws

Negotiated a favorable settlement on behalf of a leading provider of mental health services to resolve litigation filed in Connecticut federal court by a former staff psychologist alleging wrongful termination and failure to pay wages pursuant to the Fair Labor Standards Act and Connecticut Wage and Hour law.

Broker Dealer – Wage & Hour Class Action

Representing a registered broker dealer in a purported wage and hour class action filed on behalf of sales people allegedly misclassified as exempt from minimum wage and overtime compensation.

Worldwide Leader of Intent – Based Solutions

Representation of company in employment litigation including defending an action commenced by a former employee alleging religious discrimination, and all aspects of employment matters including severance, contracts, and exit incentive plans.

World-Class Asset Integrity Management – Employment Litigation

Representation of global asset integrity management company in the award of an injunction restraining competitor and key employees from raiding workforce, misappropriating confidential information and solicitation of customers.

Small Bone Innovations – Counsel on Employment Matters

Representation of Small Bone Innovations in all aspects of its employment disputes, risk management, restrictive covenant analysis, and the drafting and negotiation of executive contracts and severance agreements.

Law Firm Partner – Profits Dispute

Representation of a partner in a law firm against the firm in an arbitration concerning unpaid profits. A 15-day trial resulted in an award to our client of nearly $500,000.

Talent Management Services – Former Employee/Shareholder Litigation

Representation of a global recruitment and talent management services provider in litigation commenced by a former employee/shareholder claiming wrongful termination, fraud and damages in connection with the sale of the company subsequent to the employee's departure.

Wholesale Food Company – Wrongful Termination Litigation

Representation of a family-owned wholesale food company against claims for wrongful termination and constructive discharge asserted by a family member/principal.

Manufacturer – Sexual Harassment Mediation

Represented a manufacturing company in the successful mediation of claims for sexual harassment and constructive termination.

Financial Services Company – Arbitration

Defense of a pre-eminent financial services company in an arbitration involving numerous brokers who left a competitor to work for our client. The competitor claimed breach of non-solicitation and confidentiality provisions in the brokers' contracts.

Foreign Insurance Company – Wrongful Discharge Claim

Representation of a foreign insurance company in connection with the wrongful discharge claim from the managing directors of a U.S. subsidiary.

Regional Securities Firm – FINRA Investigation

Representation of a regional securities firm in a FINRA investigation in connection with the firm’s hiring of a statutorily disqualified person.