Hanshaw Kennedy Hafen’s Collin Kennedy Helps Energy Services Company Owner Win in Lawsuit Filed by Brothers and Helps Save Family Business
Houston – On October 4, 2018, a Harris County jury found that Mark Hotze and two of his brothers who saved a Houston energy services company from ruin did not breach their fiduciary duties and owed nothing to two other brothers who had hoped to close the business and cash out.
The suing brothers alleged Mark Hotze and two other brothers breached their duties when they saved Compressor Engineering Corp. (CECO) from foreclosure in 2014 and 2015. After the 4 week trial, the jury had a lengthy list of questions to answer in a lawsuit that could have cost the defendants up to $30 million had it gone the other way.
Mark Hotze’s lawyer, Collin Kennedy, said the case took a terrible toll on the family. “Their father started this business and gave it to the five sons. The brothers who abandoned the business in hard times were trying to extract money from the three who stood by and resurrected it,” Mr. Kennedy said.
David and Bruce Hotze, along with David’s wife Donna, sued brothers Mark, Steven and Richard Hotze and some of their joint and separate business entities. The two suing bothers wanted to unravel and close the business. Bruce and David Hotze left CECO in 2014 when the company was facing foreclosure and the loss of over 400 jobs. Richard and Mark Hotze built the company back up with the support of their brother Steven. The case is David Hotze v. IN Management, LLC et al. No. 2016-36300 in Harris County’s 61 st District Court.
Hanshaw Kennedy Hafen, LLP is a multi-practice law firm based in Frisco, Texas. Our attorneys handle a broad range of practice areas including commercial litigation, business law, healthcare law, estate planning, catastrophic injury, divorce and family law. We represent a diverse client base that consists of individuals and businesses ranging from sole proprietorships, family offices, newly formed startups to large corporations in a wide range of industries.
FIRM SUCCESSFULLY DEFEATS TEXAS JURISDICTION
The firm recently represented a Canadian business which had been sued in Texas. The opposing party alleged numerous causes of action against our client in Collin County District Court. Mr. Hanshaw filed a Special Appearance objecting to Texas jurisdiction over our client. The firm was able to show the Court that our client had not established the contacts necessary to confer jurisdiction under Texas and Federal law. Mr. Hanshaw was able to win the fight over jurisdiction and have the case dismissed with prejudice, thus saving our client a significant amount of both time and money.
FIRM SUCCESSFULLY OVERCOMES CHALLENGE TO LOCAL VENUE IN COLLIN COUNTY
The firm represented a North Dallas business in prosecuting its contract claims against an entity in Glen Rose, Texas. Mr. Hanshaw filed the client’s suit in Collin County. The opposing party filed a motion which attempted to move the case to Somervell County by citing a mandatory venue statute. Through written and oral advocacy, Mr. Hanshaw was able to protect the client’s interest by successfully arguing the mandatory venue provision did not apply in the lawsuit, thereby maintaining local venue in Collin County and overcoming what would have otherwise been a mandatory change of venue to Somervell County.
FIRM SETTLES FOR CHILD KILLED IN FRISCO CAR ACCIDENT
Mr. Kennedy was hired by the father of a minor child who died in a car accident in Frisco, Texas. Mr. Kennedy was able to secure a $900,000 settlement with the driver who caused the accident.
SUCCESSFUL CHALLENGE TO JURISDICTION IN COLLIN COUNTY, TEXAS
The firm was recently hired by an Ohio business and individual owner who were sued for breach of contract in Collin County, Texas by a Texas plaintiff. Mr. Hanshaw immediately challenged whether the Court could take personal jurisdiction over the non-resident defendants. After hearings on the jurisdictional challenge, the Court granted the defendants’ special appearance and found that jurisdiction over the non-resident defendants was not proper. As a result, the case against the firms’ clients was dismissed from the Texas Court.
FIRM OBTAINS SIX-FIGURE SETTLEMENT PREVAILING ON TWO MOTIONS FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT
The firm represented a client in a dispute over the proper recipient of proceeds stemming from two life insurance policies. After prevailing on two motions for summary judgment, Mr. Hafen secured a six-figure settlement for the client.
FIRM OBTAINS SIX-FIGURE JURY VERDICT FOR DFW HEALTHCARE PROVIDER
The firm represented a DFW healthcare provider in a dispute against one of the world’s largest financial services firms. After prevailing on numerous motions and after a five-day jury trial, Mr. Hafen secured a six-figure jury verdict and final judgment in favor of the client.
FIRM OBTAINS JUDGMENT IN FAVOR OF SUBCONTRACTOR
The firm represented a local subcontractor in a contract dispute against a general contractor. After a bench trial, Mr. Hafen obtained a judgment in favor of the client that provided for the recovery of all costs and attorney fees.
FIRM SUCCESSFULLY DEFENDS REAL ESTATE DEVELOPER
The firm defended a local real estate developer in a multi-million dollar lawsuit in which the plaintiff alleged breach of contract and fraud. After mounting a vigorous defense, Mr. Hafen secured a settlement and release of all claims on terms favorable to the client.
FIRM OBTAINS JUDGMENT IN FAVOR OF BUSINESS SERVICES FIRM
The firm represented a Dallas business services firm in a contract dispute with its former customer. After a bench trial, Mr. Hafen obtained a judgment in favor of the client that provided for the recovery of all costs and attorney fees.
FIRM OBTAINS SIX-FIGURE SETTLEMENT FOR CLIENT
The firm represented a client in a dispute concerning the breach of fiduciary obligations and the ownership of oil and gas royalty interests. After prevailing on a motion for summary judgment filed by the defendant, Mr. Hafen secured a six-figure settlement for the client.
FIRM SUCCESSFULLY DEFENDS MULTINATIONAL HEALTHCARE MANAGEMENT FIRM
The firm defended a multinational healthcare management firm in a dispute in which the plaintiff alleged breach of contract and fraud. After mounting a vigorous defense and filing a motion for summary judgment, Mr. Hafen obtained a dismissal with prejudice of all claims against the client.
FIRM OBTAINS 100% OF AMOUNT OWED IN SIX-FIGURE SETTLEMENT FOR DALLAS BUSINESS EXECUTIVE WITHIN ONE MONTH OF FILING LAWSUIT
The firm recently represented a Dallas business executive in a dispute against a multinational IT firm. The business was refusing to pay the firm’s client commissions and bonuses owed in accordance with its contractual obligations. Within one month of filing a lawsuit, Mr. Hanshaw and Mr. Hafen were able to secure every dollar owed for their client without the need to proceed with extensive litigation.
FIRM ACHIEVES SWIFT AND LUCRATIVE RESULT FOR SERIOUSLY-INJURED TEENAGER
The firm would like to congratulate Collin Kennedy on his successful representation of a teenage boy who was the backseat passenger in a serious one-car accident in Collin County. The client sustained numerous life-threatening injuries, including but not limited to, an open fracture of the right leg, fractured skull, a brain injury and broken clavicle. The client had no health insurance and time was of the essence because the client needed critical medical care, but did not have the resources for the required care. The client hired the firm and in less than five months Mr. Kennedy was able to exact a multi-million dollar settlement from Defendant’s insurance carriers. The client is now recovering and will have the resources to get the care he needs in order to fully recover.
WRONGFUL DEATH-PREMISES LIABILITY CASE SUCCESSFULLY SETTLED
The firm would like to congratulate Collin Kennedy on his successful representation of the Estate of Minor Child John Doe in connection with a wrongful death premises liability claim against a property owner. Mr. Kennedy’s work resulted in a multi-million dollar settlement paid to the family of the Minor Child within 5 months of being retained by the client.
TAKE NOTHING JUDGMENT VICTORY FOR DEFENSE CLIENT
The firm secured a Defense verdict at trial against claims by the plaintiff that the firm’s two clients were liable for breach of contract and fraud in connection with an alleged partnership agreement to invest in a famed racing boat previously owned by Ross Perot. After a multi-day trial, judgment was rendered for both defendants and it was ordered that the Plaintiff take nothing by the action.
GARNISHMENT MONEY RESTORED BY VERDICT
Hanshaw Kennedy was hired to represent a partnership that had over $130,000 in funds wrongfully garnished from their bank account. In pursuing claims against the bank for negligence, and after a week-long jury trial, the firm’s client was awarded the full measure of damages when the jury returned a unanimous verdict in favor of our clients to restore the monies wrongfully taken from their partnership bank account.
SUMMARY JUDGMENT VICTORY
The firm prevailed on a comprehensive summary judgment motion in an alleged negligence case where the Plaintiff was seeking over $800,000 in damages from our client. Hanshaw Kennedy was able to convince the judge to grant summary judgment, thereby dismissing the case prior to trial.
DEFENSE VICTORY IN CONTRACT DISPUTE
Hanshaw Kennedy’s client was sued for breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duties arising from a dispute over the construction of high-end homes in the Dallas area. Hanshaw Kennedy filed counter-claims on behalf of Defendant against the Plaintiff for breach of contract, quantum meruit, unjust enrichment and fraud. The case proceeded to trial and the Firm’s client was awarded a monetary judgment. The Plaintiff took nothing.
JURY VERDICT ON PROMISSORY NOTE
The firm’s client sued on a promissory note in connection with the sale of its franchise to Defendants. Defendants filed counter-claims and Third-Party claims alleging violations of Federal franchise law and the Texas Business Opportunities Act. The Defendants also brought claims for fraud, negligent misrepresentation, breach of contract and violations of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act. The case proceeded to trial and 18 Questions were submitted to the jury. The jury unanimously found in our client’s favor on 17 of the questions, and 11-1 on the other question. The jury awarded our client all of the damages it sought and its attorneys’ fees.
ARBITRATOR AWARDS FOR COMPANY
The firm’s client was sued for breach of a settlement contract and breach of a non-compete agreement. Hanshaw Kennedy filed counterclaims against Plaintiff for breach of contract and fraud. At the arbitration hearing, our client was awarded damages by the Arbitrator. The Plaintiff took nothing.
EYE INJURY PLAINTIFF RECOVERS UNDER ADD POLICY
The firm’s client suffered a total loss of vision in his right eye after an accidental pool equipment malfunction. The client had purchased an Accidental Death & Dismemberment Policy through his employer and when a claim was made, the the insurance company denied the claim. The Client hired our firm and we appealed the denial and the insurance company reversed the appeal. Client’s claim is still pending, but the insurer has already tendered $1,120,000 to the Client.
NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT WITHOUT LAWSUIT FOR AUTO ACCIDENT INJURY
The client suffered a seriously debilitating and disfiguring injury in an automobile accident in Collin County. Two insurance companies denied coverage for the client after the accident. The Client hired our firm and we secured the policy limits from both insurance companies on behalf of the Client.
MULTI-CAR ACCIDENT INJURY RECOVERY
Our client was involved in a multi-car accident in Dallas and suffered a partially detached retina. The insurance company for the negligent driver denied coverage for the Client. The firm sued the negligent driver and his insurance company finally settled the Client’s claim for $160,000.
HORSEPLAY RESULTS IN PERMANENT DAMAGE TO CLIENT
The Client was accidentally dropped on her head by an acquaintance during some horseplay. The firm’s Client suffered a total loss of her senses of smell and taste. The acquaintance’s home-owner’s insurance policy denied the claim. The firm sued the negligent party and his home-owner’s policy eventually settled the case for a confidential amount.
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