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Business Law

Aug 10, 2020

Hindu group sues over retreat center construction

A Hindu organization that brought a breach of contract claim over the construction of a spiritual and cultural retreat center defeated a motion to dismiss because the signatures on the parties’ letter agreement and factual allegations allowed the court to infer the religious group and the defendant were the signatories. Background International Swaminarayan Satsang Organization […]

Jul 9, 2020

Russian owner of ‘stream-stripping’ websites may be subject to jurisdiction

The Russian owner of “stream-ripping” websites, which allow audio extraction from videos, should have known he could be sued in Virginia based upon the volume of visitors from Virginia and his other contacts with the United States. On remand, the court must determine whether the exercise of jurisdiction is constitutionally reasonable. Background This appeal concerns […]

Jul 9, 2020

Commercial painter’s lawsuit did not breach forum-selection clause

A lawsuit brought by a commercial painter for unpaid painting and cleaning services did not breach a forum-selection clause in the parties’ master services agreement, or MSA, because that clause applied only to future work. Background This breach of contract action arises out of a default judgment that Certa Pro Painters of College Station obtained […]

Jul 9, 2020

Retrospective approach to damages fails

In considering whether to enforce a liquidated damages clause in a contract between Mitsubishi and White Oak, only the probable actual damages as contemplated by the parties at the time of contract formation is relevant. A retrospective approach, looking to the actual damages incurred, is improper. Background In 2013, Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Americas Inc. […]

Jun 25, 2020

Settlement of direct action renders derivative action moot

Where a direct action brought by the company was resolved in a broad release, and there was no evidence of collusion or bad faith, a derivative action asserting identical or similar claims arising out of the same underlying facts was moot Background After the Boards of Directors responsible for the management of Oldfield, a residential […]

Jun 25, 2020

Cox can’t avoid $1 billion verdict, but can attempt to reduce award

In a copyright infringement suit brought by members of the music industry against Cox Communications, the jury’s award of $99,830 for each of the infringing works was supported by the evidence and was not unconstitutional. However, Cox will have an opportunity to show that the number of works at issue were overstated. Background On July […]

Jun 25, 2020

Seller of fake Lamborghini products must pay $6 million judgment

A man sued for allegedly marketing and selling counterfeit Lamborghini-marked merchandise failed to show he was improperly served or that default was improperly entered. Where the owners of the Lamborghini trademark and corporate affiliates sufficiently pleaded trademark and false designation claims, the maximum amount of statutory damages were awarded, as was a permanent injunction. Background [&[...]

Jun 11, 2020

City did not breach arena development agreement

Where the city of Virginia Beach refused to participate in the closing of an arena development agreement because appellant developer had not fully funded the project before closing on a construction loan, the circuit court properly determined that the city did not breach the development agreement. Overview The city of Virginia Beach made a development […]

Jun 11, 2020

UVa dorm contractor has defense to subcontractor’s claim

Although a general contractor on a dormitory project at the University of Virginia failed to respond to a subcontractor’s complaint over unpaid invoices by the due date, its motion to vacate default was granted. The general contractor had a meritorious defense, including identifying the subcontractor’s numerous breaches of the agreement and the impact of COVID-19 […]

Jun 11, 2020

Peanut farmers assert processors engaged in price fixing

Where a group of peanut farmers alleged that processors had a motive to depress the price of Runner peanuts, providing facts connecting issued price offers to the Runner peanut market and alleging efforts to coordinate price offers and conceal actual inventory using trade associations, the processors’ motions to dismiss were denied. Background The plaintiffs are […]

Jun 11, 2020

Defendants did not obstruct justice in prior lawsuits

The plaintiffs could not claim the defendants conspired to obstruct justice by denying them access to the courts in violation of the First and 14th Amendments because the record shows that the plaintiffs previously filed two lawsuits—a bias suit against Fairfax County and conspiracy suit against former colleagues— and both were dismissed for reasons unrelated […]

Jun 11, 2020

Maine business may sue without certificate of authority

A Virginia statute requiring a foreign corporation that is “transacting business” in Virginia to obtain a “certificate of authority” did not apply to a Maine-based recruiting firm that brought suit over unpaid commissions. The firm’s communications into the state about the fee arrangement and potential candidates were not “transacting business.” Background In this breach of […[...]

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