In Parekh, our Westchester commercial business litigation lawyers, successfully pursued a lawsuit and ultimately won a trial arising out of a dispute of the restaurant Orissa in Ferry, New York. Not only did our business lawyers win a trial in the Westchester Supreme Court, our attorneys successfully pursued an appeal of a negative order to the New York Appellate Division for the Second Department. The Westchester Supreme Court granted a motion to dismiss several causes of action such as breach of fiduciary duty and breach of contract as well as unfair advantage based upon documentary evidence.
What occurred is the two out of the three owners, who were a husband and wife, prepared an agreement which did not include our client, and stated they were the owners. Our client asserted that he was frozen out of the business and was an owner. After our commercial litigation lawyers filed the lawsuit in the Westchester Supreme Court, the defendants moved to dismiss the case based upon documentary evidence and claimed that the agreement which our client did not sign proved that our client was not an owner. The Westchester Supreme Court granted the motion and our business dispute lawyers appealed to the Appellate Court.
Our business litigation lawyers successfully argued that the Westchester trial lawyer committed reversible error because the documentary evidence was a sham, was completely fabricated and was prepared in furtherance of the plan to defraud our client. To win on a motion to dismiss based on documentary evidence the defense must be such that it resolves all factual issues as a matter of law, and conclusively disposes of the plaintiff’s claim. The Appellate Court agreed that to be considered ‘documentary,’ evidence, such that case can be dismissed, the documents must be unambiguous and of undisputed authenticity.
The Appellate court agreed that the Westchester Supreme Court erred in granting the defendants’ motion to dismiss the causes of action alleging breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty, as well as the causes of action seeking a judicial dissolution, an accounting, a receivership, and liquidation the ground that the purported operating agreement constituted documentary evidence that conclusively disposed of the plaintiff’s claims. The court held that a dismissal of a complaint is warranted only if the documentary evidence submitted conclusively establishes a defense to the asserted claims as a matter of law. In our case, the Court held that the case could not be dismissed because there are disputed issues relating to the authenticity of the operating agreement.
Our business litigation lawyers also proved that the Supreme Court erred in granting the defendants’ motion to dismiss the cause of action as alleged unfair competition. The Court held that since the complaint alleged that the defendants misappropriated the plaintiff’s labor, skill, expenditures, or good will, and displayed some element of bad faith in doing so, the allegations established a legally viable claim for unfair competition.
Our White Plains and New York City commercial litigation attorneys continue to fight bad decision and move the law in the right direction for all New Yorkers who are seeking justice.