• August 25, 2010

As previously covered here on Minnesota Litigator, Brian Williams argued before a Hennepin County jury that he sacrificed a great deal in reliance on a representation by his then-employer Heins Mills & Olson (HMO) that he would receive 5% of the class action bonanza enjoyed by that firm in the AOL Time Warner securities fraud class action litigation — a representation, he contended, that was false and misleading.  HMO had many defenses including the fact that, under Minnesota law, Williams was only entitled to out-of-pocket damages, not “benefit of the bargain” damages, and he had no basis for his view of just what the promise of 5% meant (5% of what, specifically?).  This week, the Minnesota Court of Appeals (Judges Minge, Hudson, and Muehlberg (Retired Dist. Ct. Judge, sitting by appointment), in an opinion by Muehlberg) ruled in Williams’ favor, though rejecting his appeal of the district court’s denial of his claim of entitlement to punitive damages.

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