Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.
Paul Teutul Sr. can not make Paul Teutul Jr. to sell his 20 percent interest in Orange County Choppers Holding Inc., as determined by an appeals court ruling.
As the Discovery Channel starts its new season of “American Chopper,” with the Teutul family feud, outside litigation between the struggle of father and son custom motorcycle builders continues.
In January 2009, Paul Sr. and Paul Jr. agreed to define their professional relationship, something they had to do to avoid violating their contract with the Discovery Channel.
The document included options that Paul Sr. gives him the power, in his sole discretion, to buy Paul Jr. out at the fair market value. They agreed to settle at a later date exactly how to determine the fair market value. In the late 20009, Paul Sr. sued Paul Jr. to force the sale.
In April 2010, Orange County State Supreme Court Justice Lewis Lubell ruled for Paul Senior, saying a hearing must be conducted by a neutral appraiser, or the court if necessary, so that a fair market value of Paul Jr.’s shares could be established. Paul Jr.’s lawyers, Larkin, Ingrassia & Tepermayster, LLP appealed.
The Appellate Division, Second Department of the State Supreme Court ruled last week that the proposal of Paul Sr. was trying to exercise to make Paul Jr. to sell him his interest in Orange County Choppers Holding Inc., was too vague.
“The Second Department has determined that what Senior calls an ‘option’, basically to force Paul Jr. to sell his shares in OCC, is not valid and not enforceable”, said Paul Jr.’s lawyer, [from] Larkin, Ingrassia & Tepermayster, LLP in Newburgh, NY. “He cannot compel Junior to sell his shares.”
The attorney for Paul Sr.said the decision does not change anything. Paul Jr. is still a shareholder, but it does affect the case. “The option would have provided us with a fast way to get to the valuation phase.” “We have to either agree among ourselves, or we have to find some other mechanism” under state business law.
The case is due back in court in January 2011, but Lubell is being transferred to Putnam County, and it’s unclear which judge will get the Teutuls’ case.
Our firm successfully defends Paul Teutul Jr.’s right to keep his shares in Orange County Choppers. This article is brought to you by Larkin, Ingrassia & Tepermayster, LLP.