I am very pleased to report the outcome of a non-jury trial of a shareholder dispute involving a Bucks County home care business. On June 22, 2020, Judge Robert J. Mellon of the Bucks County Court of Common Pleas issued his decision in the matter of Qato v. Xoxe. Judge Mellon found in favor of my client on his derivative claim on behalf of the corporation. The Court held that the defendant 50% shareholder breached his fiduciary duty to the corporation by failing to disclose that his own wife had formed a competing business and was soliciting clients of the corporation to leave and go with the wife’s new business. The defendant was ordered to pay damages in excess of $566,000, and he was also removed from the corporation’s board of directors.
Corporate shareholder disputes can be particularly challenging to litigate. This is especially true when the business is profitable and the shareholders, often close friends or family members, no longer get along. As a practitioner, I have to navigate the factual and legal issues, while also preventing the emotional components of the case from interfering with sound strategic decisions.