Idearc Media v. Siegel, Kelleher & Kahn

U.S. DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
Business Law

New York Law Journal

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Judge William Skretny

Idearc Media's 2009 suit charged law firm Siegel, Kelleher & Kahn (SKK) with contract breach over nonpayment for directory advertising. In 2011, HoganWillig became SKK's attorney of record. In response to press releases of HoganWillig's entry into a "business combination" with SKK, Idearc served HoganWillig with notice of deposition and a subpoena. After the subpoena's quash was denied, HoganWillig withdrew as SKK's counsel. Idearc's 2012 amended complaint named HoganWillig a defendant on the ground that its business combination with SKK constituted a de facto merger. In lieu of answering Idearc's amended complaint, HoganWillig moved for the complaint's dismissal as against it, contending that Idearc could not state a claim that it was responsible for SKK's debt. The court granted HoganWillig's motion. Contrary to Idearc's claim, the amended complaint lacked sufficient factual allegations from which to infer that SKK's sole owner Kahn had any ownership interest in HoganWillig after it acquired the pending litigation. Accepting Idearc's allegations as true, the court must reasonably infer that Kahn was an employee without any ownership interest in HoganWillig or the pending litigation acquired by that law firm.

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