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Seventh Circuit Questions An Esop Trustee’s “Failure To Apply Marketability Discount” In Reversal Of Summary Judgment

In the Armstrong v. LaSalle Bank National Association decision on a motion for summary judgment, the trial court found in favor of the defendant trustee’s decision to accept an employer stock valuation that did not include a discount for lack of marketability. The plaintiff appealed the unfavorable trial court decision to the Seventh Circuit. While recognizing an ESOP trustee’s discretion in employer stock valuation matters, the Appeals Court reversed the summary judgment decision.

Recent Court Decisions Related To The Reasonableness Of Executive Compensation

In litigation controversies related to the income tax deduction of shareholder/executive compensation as a business expense, the courts generally apply a multi-factor test to determine if the compensation is reasonable. The courts apply this test with an emphasis on the perspective of a hypothetical independent investor. In this analysis, the extent to which the courts accept and rely on compensation data from published compensation surveys and/or from comparable company analyses varies.

The Draft Expert Report—Caught In The Tug of War Between Full Disclosure and The Work Product Doctrine

There is a split in authority in the federal courts regarding the discoverability of attorney work product provided by counsel to his or her expert and in particular, the discoverability of draft expert reports. Most jurisdictions have ruled that the 1993 amendment to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure makes it clear that any materials provided by counsel to a testifying expert is discoverable, including information contained in draft reports.

The Application Of Daubert Challenges To Economic Damages Expert Testimony In Commercial Litigation Matters

Trial judges perform a “gatekeeping” function, deciding whether to admit or to exclude expert witness testimony as trial evidence. Trial judges often apply the four factors articulated in the Supreme Court Daubert decision in their judicial decisions regarding the admission of expert testimony. This discussion summarizes the evidentiary considerations regarding (1) the level of certainty in the causation of economic damages and (2) the level of certainty in the measurement of economic damages.


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