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  • New York attorneys Bryan J. Mazzola and Jennifer L. Stewart obtained a favorable decision from a referee after a three-day fixed issue hearing concerning whether a particular roof repair project was structural or non-structural. This issue determined whether costs were the responsibility of the Condo, if structural, or the individual unit owners, if non-structural.  This was a classic “battle of the experts” in which the Firm’s client’s selected expert clearly prevailed.
  • New York attorneys Jennifer L. Stewart and Brett Carrick won summary judgment for a Coop, its managing agent, and several board members in a derivative suit concerning Coop governance.  Two dissident board members wished to terminate and replace the Coop’s managing agent and general counsel.  They presented last-minute board resolutions to that effect, claimed that other board members with relationships to the managing agent were disqualified from voting, then slipped letters under shareholders’ doors overnight introducing a new managing agent.  When the rest of the Board explained that the resolutions had failed 2-3 and there would be no change in management, the two dissidents sued.  On summary judgment, the Firm demonstrated to the Court that the resolutions had not passed, all board members were entitled to vote, and that voting down the resolutions was plainly in the best interest of the Coop.  Thus, the Court granted summary judgment and dismissed the complaint.
  • New York attorneys Gary S. Ehrlich and Jennifer L. Stewart negotiated a favorable settlement for a Coop that had been engaged in a 30-year dispute with its Sponsor over voting rights and associated governance issues.  The Sponsor, who owned approximately half of the units in the Coop and had been re-acquiring additional units, sought to maintain control of the Board by voting for all seats, notwithstanding restrictions on his right to vote in the offering plan and associated regulations.  The Sponsor’s ownership of such a high percentage of units had made financing difficult for those seeking to purchase or refinance their apartments.  The Firm negotiated a very favorable settlement under which the Sponsor would resume selling units and reduce his ownership, the reacquired units would not have the special rights of Sponsor units, the Sponsor would pay his arrears in full, and he would vote his shares only for a minority of seats on the Board.  Thus, in future, a majority of the Board will be chosen by the independent shareholders, and not the Sponsor.