September 1, 2022

Fishkin Lucks Prevails at Trial in New York County

Fishkin Lucks won a bench trial in the Supreme Court of New York, New York County, Commercial Division (Ostrager, J.), securing two judgments for its client, investors in a series of energy transactions, totaling more than $5 million.  The lawsuit arose from a transaction to purchase oil and gas assets in the Permian Basis. The parties’ operating agreement, together with a board resolution, provided that if the transaction failed to close by a specified date, our client would be repaid nearly $4 million as a return of capital it had contributed towards the transaction.  This capital return was personally guaranteed by the company’s managing member.  The energy deal did not close by the specified date, and in August 2020, we brought suit on our client’s behalf to enforce the contractually owed capital return and the managing member’s personal guarantee.  In addition, the Firm sought to recover on an unjust enrichment theory $1 million in capital contributions that, at the direction of the company’s managing member, had been paid directly to his wife.  At trial, the defendants disputed the authenticity of the pertinent transaction documents and contended that the transaction’s expenses (twenty percent of which were our client’s responsibility) exceeded the amount of the capital return sought.  The Firm successfully opposed both arguments.  The Court agreed that the operating agreement and board resolution had been properly authenticated, and that defendants failed to establish that the transaction’s expenses, which were confined to a narrow timeframe, had meaningfully reduced our client’s right to recovery. The Court also agreed that bank records introduced at trial established our client’s independent$1 million unjust enrichment claim.