ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Has The Delaware Court Been Compromised?

Updated on September 20, 2016

A Checkered Past

For those who may not know, since October of 2015, I have fervently questioned Delaware Chancellor Andre Bouchard, who prior to his appointment to the bench was a Democratic activist, over his appointments for the position of Chief Deputy for the Register of Wills Office in Sussex County, Delaware. I challenged him for appointing three democrats (possibly political favoritism) over more accomplished personnel already within the office of the Register of Wills. Since the appointments, each of them have failed in their duties and have since been replaced, one after the other.

Instead of following the recommendation of the elected Register of Wills, Cindy Green (a Republican), who highly recommended a competent, experienced, electronic-filing expert already employed within the system, Bouchard has created dissension and multiple problems resulting in delays for people needing to get their estates in order. Hopefully Bouchard’s next appointment will be better. Following this background is another situation involving a current case in Bouchard’s Court, which I find interesting:

TransPerfect

I have been made aware of a Delaware corporation operating in New York City that is in litigation in Delaware’s Chancery Court. The Honorable Chancellor Bouchard is presiding over the case. I have obtained significant documentation, letters, affidavits, and so on. The company’s name is TransPerfect Global and it is owned by Phillip Shawe and Elizabeth Elting. Elting (the Plaintiff in the case), wants to sell her half of the business, but she wants more for her stock than it is worth. She wants the controlling share. Shawe wants to buy her out and keep growing the business, but Elting will not agree, so hence, the Chancery Court has taken over. When these things happen, equity is supposed to reign, not arbitrary and capricious rulings which may end up destroying a viable American company.

What would you call a situation where a Delaware Corporation named TransPerfect Global, a very successful $600 million dollar company that employs 4000 people, is being forced by the Chancery Court to be sold because one stockholder chooses to be greedy? Delaware’s Chief Chancellor, Andre Bouchard refuses to address the evidence presented to him, and force an equitable sale to the willing partner, but chose to dissolve the company.

I call it inequitable, especially when the company will most likely be put up for sale and thousands of jobs will be lost. Does this sound equitable?

Bouchard installed a custodian who is a friend of his, and that man, Bob Pincus, received a detailed letter from 75 senior staff members at TransPerfect asking him and the judge not to sell the company. They asserted faith in Shawe as a manager and their roles in keeping the company in great financial standing. Pincus, a former Partner of Bouchard’s at “Skadden Arps”, chose not to share the letter with Bouchard. Instead, he claimed that he got "a letter from some of the staff" airing their grievances.

Instead of refuting Bouchard's claim that the company is in disarray, Pincus failed to disclose the fact that 75 top employees expressed concern over the court forcing a sale, and demonstrated that the company is running smoothly.

These employees also made an offer of $200 million to buy out Plaintiff Elizabeth Elting. Understanding the amount is less than 50% of the company's worth, and less than the figure Shawe offered to Elting, which she turned down, the point is that the employees were willing to put their own money up because they trust Phillip Shawe to run TransPerfect.

Chancellor Bouchard apparently is not considering this in his assessment. From his rulings so far, he has empowered himself by declaring the successful firm in harm's way.

Affidavits on public file in a NYS court were also handed to Bouchard showing over 175 employees' outstanding opinions of Phillip Shawe as a manager who cares about his company. Folks, as Shakespeare once said, “Something is rotten in Denmark.”

What do you call it when the temporary court appointed custodian, a man named Bob Pincus, is appointed to run the company by Chancellor Bouchard and it turns out that Pincus just happens to be a friend of Bouchard’s? I call it cronyism, scratching the back of your buddy.

Pincus, according to the evidence and complaints by the current company employees, has unnecessarily spent millions of dollars in ridiculous consulting fees, all while running up the cost of the litigation. Ouch!!

Particularly outrageous, is that Bouchard recently appeared on a Tulane Law School panel discussion with Plaintiff Elting’s attorney, Kevin Shannon a couple of weeks ago in New Orleans at Tulane University (* a reference is provided below). The "jury is still out" in this case and Bouchard is the sole jurist. Their joint appearance certainly has the "appearance of impropriety” and should be cause for Bouchard’s recusal from the case. Additionally, the impropriety could be justification for an appeal or even a sanction from the Delaware Bar Association?

What do you call it when Chancellor Bouchard appears on a public panel in New Orleans with the plaintiff’s attorney? I call it impropriety, especially when Bouchard is about to decide the fate of the defendant in the case.

Under Delaware law “the appearance of an impropriety is as bad as the impropriety itself.” Bouchard should recuse himself from this case. It appears from the evidence, pleadings, and denials I have reviewed that Chancellor Andre Bouchard continuously plays loose with not only fairness and equity, but also with propriety and ethics.

From my perspective, the concern here is that Delaware depends on its corporate fees to fill its coffers. Delaware is known as the corporate state. When its equity court, the Court of Chancery, becomes compromised by poor decisions and the appearances of impropriety, then why would people continue to incorporate their businesses in Delaware? This should be of great concern to our legislators, our business people, and all of our citizens. Delaware’s economic growth is depleted enough as it is.

There is much more to come on this topic and this is the primary salvo. This is an interesting scenario - and a first of its kind - whereby a viable business could be forced out of business by the judicial branch of Delaware’s government.

I have sent my opinions to Chancellor Bouchard, who is supposed to rule on this case on April 27th. I am curious to see what happens, however all indications from the previous pleadings and denials which are public record indicate that the company will go on the auction block and could be eventually outsourced abroad, killing thousands of American jobs.

Folks, this is not what America is supposed to be about. Indeed, I find this possible scenario most disconcerting.

Your comments are welcome and subject to being forwarded.

Respectfully submitted,

JUDSON Bennett-Coastal Network

WHat do you think?

What is your opinion of the TransPerfect case

See results

TransPerfect Lawsuit

There are many stories on the Internet about this case

Comments, Opinions

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Becky Stewarts profile image

      Becky Stewarts 

      2 years ago

      Why would the government step in take over a private profitable company? We are not in Russia. And why Chancellor Bouchard would be permitted to enthrone his former partner from Skadden to run a successful company is beyond me. This whole situation reeks of corruption in the Delaware court system.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)