During the course of business, numerous conflicts can arise, including construction disputes, contract claims, fraud cases, shareholder issues, real estate matters and bankruptcy litigation. Representative matters include:
- Schafer and Weiner defended two members of a limited liability company against a lawsuit brought by the third member. The plaintiff alleged that Schafer and Weiner’s clients had illegally used the trademark of the company and converted property of the company. Schafer and Weiner discovered that the company did not have an operating agreement, and that as a result, the company’s registered agent was the manager of the company as a matter of law. Schafer and Weiner instructed their clients to contact the resident agent and refer her to legal counsel, who then filed, in conjunction with Schafer and Weiner, a motion to dismiss the complaint based on the third member’s lack of authority to manage the company or file a lawsuit on its behalf. The resident agent’s motion was granted, and the lawsuit was dismissed as a result – at a fraction of the cost of litigating the complex trademark issues alleged in the complaint.
- A prominent local businessman retained Schafer and Weiner to defend him in a lawsuit his lender had brought against both him and his business. The lender alleged that the business had defaulted under its loan documents and owed all outstanding amounts due, and that the businessman was responsible under a guaranty. Schafer and Weiner brought a counterclaim against the lender alleging that the lender had improperly attempted to set off against and invalidate cashier’s checks made out to the businessman. Schafer and Weiner argued that this constituted the illegal conversion of the cashier’s checks. Schafer and Weiner won summary disposition on this issue and, before a trial scheduled to determine the amount of damages the lender caused by converting the cashier’s checks, settled with the lender on the businessman’s behalf. The settlement required the lender to make a payment to the businessman, and release him and his business from any debts the lender alleged they owed.
- Counsel to a large pension trust fund in matters including the foreclosure of a resort development in northern Michigan where the firm represented the trust as mortgage lender in the foreclosure of hundreds of construction liens, successfully defending the trust against the liens and leading to at least one published decision (Stoker v. TriMount / Bay Harbor Building Co., 268 Mich. App. 194 (2005)).
- Schafer and Weiner represented the purchaser of a 143-bed skilled long-term nursing care and rehabilitation facility in an action against the seller to recover in excess of $1,400,000 as a result of, among other non-disclosures, the seller’s failure to disclose outstanding liabilities to the State of Michigan for (i) Medicaid Interim Payments, (ii) Medicaid overpayments, and (iii) Quality Assurance Supplement payment recoveries. The defendant reached out to our client in the early stages of litigation to settle, and our client achieved a very favorable settlement.
If you’d prefer to avoid litigation, we also provide expert mediation services. Several of our partners are certified mediators and apply their alternative dispute resolution skills to settle complex cases efficiently and economically.