Litigation and Dispute Resolution
Merhab Robinson, Jackson & Clarkson represents businesses and their principals (shareholders, members, etc.) through all phases and types of litigation. Our firm aggressively attempts to resolve disputes early, without resorting to litigation. We have successfully resolved many complaints through mediation and arbitration. Our firm takes a practical business-minded approach to litigation by minimizing the impact and cost to the client. We provide the advocacy and counsel the client needs to solve its disputes and secure its future.
The firm won an important victory in an appeal in the case of Jones v. Gregory (2006), 137 Cal. App. 4th 798. On March 14, 2006, the court reversed judgment against defendant Gregory, the firm’s client, and remanded for proceedings consistent with its opinion.
The matter involved a judgment against Mr. Gregory, holding him individually liable for a corporation’s “delinquencies in paying outstanding wages, expenses, interest and penalties, not because he ‘did business as’ or through any ‘veil-piercing’ analysis, but simply because he was a ‘corporate officer who ha[d] operational control of the corporation’s covered enterprise,’” quoting Lopez v. Silverman (S.D.N.Y 1998) 14 F. Supp.2d 405, 412-413.
The Labor Commissioner, Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE), brought this suit against Mr. Gregory on behalf of the corporation’s unpaid California employees. DLSE argued that Gregory fell within the meaning of “employer” in various Labor Code wage provisions and Industrial Welfare Commission (IWC) wage orders. Attacking the judgment, the appellant contended that California law does not support imposing personal liability on corporate officers or agents as “employers.” The court relied on a Supreme Court decision in Reynolds v. Bement (2005) 36 Cal.4th 1075 (Reynolds) and reversed the judgment. The remand on the appellate matter was for consideration of an alter ego theory since the lower court didn’t rule on that issue.