Daniel J. Bergeson
Managing Partner[email protected]
John D. Pernick
Of Counsel[email protected]
John W. (Jay) Fowler
Of Counsel[email protected]
Elizabeth (Betsy) Lear
Of Counsel[email protected]
Bergeson, LLP has a dynamic business litigation practice, with a broad spectrum of clients, including public and private companies, high tech companies, officers and directors, partnerships, investors, general partners, limited partners, and individuals. Our lawyers have represented plaintiffs, defendants, and third-parties in federal and state courts, as well as in arbitrations, and mediations. We have litigated contract disputes, creditor-debtor issues, sales of companies, mergers and acquisitions, breach of fiduciary duty claims, accountant malpractice, fraud claims, insurance coverage, distributor and sales agreements, product liability, alter ego, and more. Our lawyers resolve cases through negotiated settlement, through motions to dismiss and for summary judgment, by trial, and if necessary, by appeal. We aggressively seek preliminary relief when needed, including temporary restraining orders and writs of attachment.
- Phan v. Tony Tolani, et al., No. 16CV291491, Santa Clara County Superior Court
Represented the Plaintiff – a purchaser of a high-tech manufacturing company in San Jose – in trying her claims of breach of contract against the sellers, defendants Tony Tolani and Shalini Tolani, and concealment against Mr. Tolani, in a sharply-contested retrial in Santa Clara County Superior Court. Plaintiff claimed that the Tolanis failed to disclose accurate and complete information to her during due diligence before they sold the manufacturing company to her to inflate the purchase price for their own gain. This jury trial win was particularly challenging because Plaintiff, represented by different counsel, had already lost four of her seven claims at a first jury trial that resulted in a mistrial on the remaining claims of concealment and breach of contract. In the retrial, after eight days of trial and several days of deliberations, secured a unanimous jury verdict of concealment and breach of contract against Tony Tolani, and a jury verdict of breach of contract against Mrs. Tolani. The jury awarded Plaintiff damages in the amount of $577,600 against the Tolanis. Based on the attorney’s fees clause in the underlying contract, the Tolanis also agreed to pay an additional $775,000 to Plaintiff for attorney’s fees and costs.
- Represent the distributor in action pending in the United States District Court for the Southern District of California, in an action alleging that the Treaty of 1855 between the Yakama Nation and the United States shields plaintiffs from having to pay or reimburse to the distributor any money for California fuel excise or sales taxes incurred by the distributor.
- Mircea Voskerician v. Mark Zuckerberg, et al., No. 1-14-CV264667, Santa Clara County Superior Court
Bergeson, LLP represented defendants Iconiq Capital and Divesh Makan, financial advisors to Mark Zuckerberg, in this litigation involving claims by Plaintiff that defendants defrauded him in connection with his assignment to an entity controlled by Mr. Zuckerberg of the right to purchase certain real property, in exchange for a $1.7 million payment by Mr. Zuckerberg.
- Hulavision Inc. v. Ruloff Capital Corporation, No. 1-12-222547, Santa Clara County Superior Court
Defendant Ruloff Capital Corporation (“Ruloff Capital”) entered into a Litigation Funding Agreement (“LFA”) with Plaintiff Hulavision, Inc. (“Hulavision”). Under the LFA, Ruloff Capital agreed to fund Hulavision’s case for theft of trade secrets against NBC Universal and Hulu LLC (the “NBC case”); in return, Hulavision assigned Ruloff Capital 50% of net proceeds from the NBC case. Ruloff Capital performed under the LFA for almost three years by making substantial payments to the lawyers prosecuting the NBC case for Hulavision. As trial in the NBC case approached, Hulavision brought a separate action against Ruloff Capital to rescind the LFA and keep for itself the 50% interest in the NBC case by claiming champerty, breach of contract, and fraud. In 2014, Bergeson, LLP represented Ruloff Capital in a six-week trial, where the Court found in Ruloff Capital’s favor by denying Hulavision’s rescission claim.
- Global Equipment Services and Manufacturing, Inc. v. Nguyen, No. 1-14-CV-260551, Santa Clara County Superior Court
In 2015, Bergeson, LLP was retained to serve as lead trial counsel for Global Equipment Services and Manufacturing, Inc. (“GES”) and its CEO Don Tran in multiple cases set for trial with complex claims and cross-claims for fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, breach of stock purchase agreements, defamation, and indemnification related to alleged misconduct by a former executive involving dissemination of false financial information and creation of false accounting records. After leading expedited discovery involving more than a dozen depositions, and navigating multiple ex parte applications and motions involving consolidation, continuance, amendment of the pleadings, judgment on the pleadings, expedited discovery, expert discovery, and writs of attachment, among others, all cases were resolved successfully for GES and its CEO Don Tran.
- Representing prominent technology company in declaratory relief action and cross-claims for breach of contract and declaratory relief involving a dispute over the cancellation provisions of an agreement to provide IT services to a large financial institution.
- The Firm represented an asset management company and two of its principals in an action filed against it in federal district court alleging claims of fraud, negligent misrepresentation, aiding and abetting fraud, and tortious interference.
- Zurvan Mahamedi v. Lex Kosowsky, Case No. 1-15-CV-278496, Santa Clara County Superior Court
The Firm represented a publicly traded company and its CEO in an action filed against them alleging claims of breach of fiduciary duty, unfair competition, negligence, concealment, conspiracy, and aiding and abetting. The Court sustained our clients’ demurrer without leave to amend.
- The Firm has represented a distributor of petroleum products in a variety of disputes with station operators, including:
Purported class action filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court alleging claims of price discrepancies, shortages, and failure to pass on a tax credit. The Court denied with prejudice Plaintiffs’ Motion for Class Certification finding that Plaintiffs: (1) failed to establish that questions of law or fact common to the class predominated over the questions affecting the individual members; (2) failed to establish that their claims are typical of the class; (3) failed to establish that they and their counsel can adequately represent the class, or that Plaintiffs are willing to act as fiduciaries and protect the interests of the class members; and (4) failed to establish that proceeding as a class action is superior to the alternatives.
The Firm also secured a favorable jury verdict for the distributor in an action alleging price discrepancies, shortages, and late deliveries.
- Nguyen v. Huang, et al., No. SCV240886, Sonoma County Superior Court
The Firm represented the CEO and President of Unicond defending an action filed by Plaintiff. The action included a contract relating to sound electronic assemblies consisting of audio amplifiers and switched-mode power supplies. Plaintiff contended Defendant wrongfully failed to pay him $3 million which he claimed was owed under the contract. On the eve of trial, Plaintiff dismissed his action with prejudice without any payment by Defendant.
- Maplebrook Townhomes LLC v. Greenbank, No. 10-CV-63688 LHK, United States District Court, Northern District of California
The Firm represented defendant Greenbank in this action alleging violations of the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act, the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, and the Truth in Lending Act. The Court granted our client’s motion to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction.
- Pybas Vegetable Seed Co., Inc. v. Tozer Seeds Ltd., No. C08 02216, United States District Court, Northern District of California
The Firm represented defendant seed company in an action alleging violations of the Racketeering and Corrupt Organizations Act, conspiracy, unfair competition, interference with contract, interference with prospective economic relations, conversion, misappropriation of trade secrets, breach of contract, quantum meruit, promissory estoppel, and breach of fiduciary duty.
- DVS, Inc. v. C2 Microsystems, No. 1-06-CV-061760, Santa Clara County Superior Court
Following a two-week jury trial, the Santa Clara County Superior Court granted C2 Microsystems, Inc.’s motion for nonsuit. The case concerned allegations of intentional misrepresentation relating to an IP licensing agreement. DVS, Inc., the licensor, brought suit against C2 Microsystems, Inc. (the licensee) and Edmund Sun (the former CEO of both companies). DVS alleged that Mr. Sun made misrepresentations on behalf of C2 Microsystems regarding the value of the licensed technology and sought damages in excess of $10 million. The Court found that, as a matter of law, DVS failed to meet its burden of showing that a majority of the DVS Board of Directors relied on any alleged misrepresentations by Mr. Sun. The Court also awarded C2 Microsystems, Inc. $133,300 in attorneys’ fees and costs for its successful defense of DVS’s claim of breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing. The ruling was affirmed on appeal.
- Lam Research Corporation v. Dallas Semiconductor Corporation and Maxim Integrated Products, Inc., No. 1-02-CV805045, Santa Clara County Superior Court
Lam Research supplied wafer fabrication equipment to the semiconductor industry. After ordering custom-made equipment from Lam, defendants denied the existence of a contract, and refused to accept delivery or pay. On behalf of Lam, Bergeson, LLP tried the case to a jury, which found in Lam’s favor awarding $11.4 million in contractual damages, plus more than $2 million in prejudgment interest and costs. Defendants appealed, but the appellate court upheld the jury’s verdict. Bergeson, LLP ultimately collected $15.5 million for our client.