Commercial litigation is a legal area that deals with disputes and conflicts between businesses or individuals related to business matters. Commercial litigation is a complex and dynamic field that requires the expertise of skilled attorneys. In this article, we will discuss some of the most common types of commercial litigation cases that arise and the legal principles and considerations that underlie them.
Breach of Contract
One of the most common types of commercial litigation cases is a breach of contract. A breach of contract occurs when one party fails to fulfill its contractual obligations. In such cases, the aggrieved party can seek damages for the losses caused by the breach. The key purpose of breach of contract damages is to make the plaintiff “whole,” meaning to put the plaintiff in the same position it would have occupied if the defendant had fully performed its obligations under the contract.[i]
Intellectual Property Disputes
Another common area of commercial litigation involves disputes related to intellectual property rights. Intellectual property refers to creations of the mind, such as patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets. When someone violates another’s intellectual property rights, it can cause significant harm to the owner.
Partnership disputes are another common type of commercial litigation case. A partnership is a business structure in which two or more people share ownership and management responsibilities. Partnership disputes can arise due to disagreements over the management of the business, the allocation of profits and losses, or the direction of the business. In some cases, the dispute can lead to the dissolution of the partnership.[ii]
Shareholder disputes are similar to partnership disputes but involve conflicts among the shareholders of a corporation. A corporation is a legal entity that has its own rights and responsibilities separate from its shareholders. Shareholder disputes can arise when shareholders disagree on how the company should be run, the allocation of profits, or the valuation of the company’s shares. In some cases, shareholder disputes can result in a shareholder derivative lawsuit or a breach of fiduciary duty claim against the company’s directors and officers.[iii]
Securities litigation is a type of commercial litigation that involves claims related to investments in stocks, bonds, or other securities. Securities litigation may involve claims of fraud, insider trading, misrepresentation, or breach of fiduciary duty. Securities litigation is often complex and requires the expertise of attorneys who are well-versed in federal and state securities laws.[iv]
In conclusion, commercial litigation encompasses a broad range of legal disputes that arise in the business world. The types of commercial litigation cases discussed in this article are just a few examples of the many types of disputes that businesses and individuals may encounter. If you get involved in a commercial litigation case, it is crucial to seek the advice of an experienced attorney who can help you navigate the legal complexities of your case and achieve the best possible outcome.
[i] See Brushton-Moira Cent. Sch. Dist. v. Fred H. Thomas Assoc’s, P.C., 669 NYS2d 520, 522 (1998).
[ii] See NY Partnership Law § 1, et seq.
[iii] See In re EZCORP Inc. Consulting Agreement Derivative Litig., 130 A.3d 934, 944 (Del. Ch. 2016); NY Business Corporation Law § 717.
[iv] See, generally, Securities Act of 1933 (15 U.S.C. § 77z-1); Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (15 U.S.C. § 78u-4).