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Overview

Stone Pigman's reputation was built in the courtroom. We have a long history of successfully representing businesses, both large and small, in a wide variety of lawsuits and claims, including disputes concerning contracts, real estate development and land use, landlord-tenant issues and property rights. We also have extensive experience in business tort cases involving RICO, unfair trade practices and trade secrets. Our practice of putting together teams of lawyers, including lawyers from our Business Section, has proved particularly useful to our clients engaged in defending or pursuing intra-company disputes.

Our experienced Business Litigation Group takes on many of the most significant and complex commercial litigation cases in the region.  Clients range from local business owners and individuals to Fortune 100 companies - and our trial experience ranges from contract disputes to the most complex commercial matters.  Our litigators' depth of knowledge and experience, preparation and courtroom skills set us apart from the competition.

When you need reliable, efficient attorneys to handle your routine business matters, we can ably fulfill that need.  And when you need counsel for unique and high-risk matters, our litigation team can provide that representation.  We focus on your business objectives while quickly and efficiently representing your legal interests.  This may call for negotiation and mediation, or for aggressive and proactive discovery and motion practice.  We will work with you to defend your interests, prosecute claims on your behalf, and represent you vigorously at all stages of the litigation.

We recognize that litigation means lost time and profits for our clients.  We focus on avoiding drawn-out disputes, and instead focus on targeted discovery and meaningful substantive motions, settlement opportunities, and alternative dispute resolution choices.

Some representative matters our Commercial and Complex Litigation attorneys have handled include:

  • Defended Consulting Service Group, L.L.C. ("CSG") and a former member/investment advisor in a complex securities law dispute filed by three public service Louisiana pension funds. CSG formerly served as the investment consultant for the pension funds, which asserted breach of contract and unfair trade practices claims against CSG due to a collective $100 million loss arising from investments in a hedge fund. Following extensive litigation over jurisdictional issues, the firm secured a summary judgment to dismiss the plaintiff's claim six weeks before a jury trial was set to commence.

  • Represented the New Orleans Building Corporation ("NOBC") in a lawsuit over an award of a contract to redevelop the New Orleans World Trade Center building. A losing bidder sued the NOBC and the City of New Orleans, seeking a TRO, injunction and declaratory judgment to prevent the award to the winning bidder. The trial court denied plaintiff's motion for preliminary injunction, and the Louisiana Fourth Circuit Court of Appeal affirmed that judgment in April 2016. In November 2016, after further proceedings in the trial court, the judge dismissed the remaining claims and the Fourth Circuit unanimously affirmed the dismissal.

  • Successfully represented a national computer network services company in a suit for breach of a $200+ million public contract governed by the Federal Acquisition Regulations filed by the State of Louisiana with the ultimate result of a dismissal of the State's $17 million counterclaim, an agreement on a termination for convenience claim and a $25+ million arbitration award in favor of the client.
  • Represented Auto Auctions Corporation ("IAA"), which auctions total lost vehicles, in a negligent spoliation of evidence claim. The plaintiff was injured in a car accident and asserted a products liability claim against the manufacturer of his vehicle and negligent spoliation of evidence claims against his insurer and IAA, alleging they failed to preserve his car for use as evidence. Secured a dismissal of the claim against IAA in the district court, which was affirmed by the Louisiana 1st Circuit Court of Appeal. Due to conflicting decisions in the state appellate courts on the negligent spoliation of evidence, the Louisiana Supreme Court granted writs to determine the issue. Successfully argued that recognition of an independent tort cause of action based on spoliation of evidence would be inconsistent with the evolution of state jurisprudence and undesirable for a number of public policy reasons. The Supreme Court agreed and held that there is no cause of action for negligent spoliation of evidence in LA.

  • Represented Sid-Mar’s, a long-established restaurant, in a takings case arising from the State’s 2006 commandeering of the land on which the restaurant sat for construction of a hurricane protection project in New Orleans. State court issued judgments in favor of our clients, awarding nearly $4 million in compensation for the taking, including attorneys’ fees and costs, plus interest.

  • Appointed liaison counsel for major homebuilders who were sued and who themselves have claims against Chinese manufacturers of drywall. The firm also represented numerous individual builders and installers and an international home improvement retailer in the multi-district litigation in the Eastern District of Louisiana.

  • In state court, represented the managing partners and 50% owners of a $100+ million retail, commercial and residential development in a suit brought by the other partner for dissolution of the partnership and for damages alleged to have resulted from mismanagement."
  • Successfully defended a major motion picture actor/director/producer in a federal jury trial involving $18 million claims of securities law violations and fraud brought by investors, including actor Stephen Baldwin, in an oil-spill-remediation technology corporation.
  • Represented a Louisiana Succession in several litigation matters relating to significant land and mineral interests in northwest Louisiana in the Haynesville Shale area.  The firm has represented the Succession in successfully sustaining on appeal a multi-million dollar judgment nullifying certain business transactions affecting hundreds of acres of land and mineral interests and certain corporate and LLC membership interests. The firm continues to represent the Succession in ongoing disputes relating to those interests, involving claims of fraud, breach of fiduciary duty and mismanagement, as well as, challenging an excessive attorney fee arrangement with their former counsel.
  • In federal court, Stone Pigman obtained summary judgment in favor of a national law firm in a $5 million lawsuit by a former client alleging civil RICO and state-law claims.
  • Represented an investment consulting firm in a lawsuit in Louisiana arising out of the failure of a Morgan Keegan bond fund. The litigation involved claims of securities law violations as well as state law claims of fraud, deceptive trade practices, negligence and detrimental reliance.
  • In the Louisiana trial and lower appellate courts as well as the Louisiana Supreme Court, Stone Pigman successfully represented a major national research university in a dispute that arose out of the university's decision to merge its seven undergraduate colleges into a unified undergraduate college.
  • Representing a local apartment complex owner in litigation with contractors following disputes regarding contractual performance and interpretation of payment clauses in multi-million dollar repair contracts following hurricane damages to the complex.

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