Friday, January 15, 2010

Leighton v. Leesfield, Round Two!

ORDER Denying Def Mot to Arbitrate

Anyone remember the messy legal divorce of longtime partners John Elliott Leighton and Ira Leesfield?

Well Judge Gill Freeman just entered an order denying Ira's motion to have all matters sent to arbitration.

At issue in this case is both a 1994 Employment Agreement, which has an arbitration provision, and a 2005 Shareholder Agreement, which apparently does not.

For whatever reason both appear to govern the parties' business relationship, but they are separate and distinct and not "inextricably intertwined."

Makes perfect sense, right?

Thus, Ira can't withhold the $250k apparently due to John under the Shareholder Agreement as a "set off" against what he claims are "challenged amounts" under the Employment Agreement.

Oy!

Also, while the Employment Agreement is subject to mandatory and binding arbitration (which appears to be ongoing), but the Shareholder Agreement is not, Judge Freeman decided to order concurrent non-binding arbitration of the Shareholder Agreement before the same arbitrators who are considering the Employment Agreement.

Got that?

(Folks, there's a reason why we litigators refer out our transactional work.)

31 comments:

  1. Hank Adorno for chief arbitrator!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Judge Freeman also dismissed alot of Leighton's complaint in a separate order you apparently weren't provided.

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  3. Maybe Leesfield can bunk with Scott Rothstein at the federal correctional facility!

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  4. Arbitrator? More like rehabilitator. Looks like Leesfield's gonna need a PR magician when this is over. Lookout Miami legal community. Wouldn't be surprised if some of his many ex-partners got in on this.

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  5. Hank and Ira may need the same ethics counsel.

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  6. Forget ethics. Let's just see what comes out in the depositions. There are a lot of people interested.

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  7. How ironic. Leesfield claims to be a trial attorney dedicated to the right of trial by jury. Isn't that what the trial bar keeps claiming? Yet here he was trying to force an arbitration where he wasn't entitled. Why no jury trial Leesfield? What are you afraid of?

    ReplyDelete
  8. Hey Ira, can't your sister get you out of this jam? What about Clinton? A couple of bucks more might get you a personal appearance. Fork. Done.

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