News Brief

Thome and Butterfield Obtain Dismissal With Prejudice of Complaint Alleging Fraud, Conspiracy and Related Claims

December 16, 2013

Sheri Thome (Partner-Las Vegas) and Chad Butterfield (Associate-Las Vegas) recently prevailed on a motion to dismiss on behalf of a life insurance company client and certain related entities in federal court in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The action arose out of a real estate joint venture entered into in 2007 between a wholly owned subsidiary of the client insurance company, and the plaintiffs, two developers.

Following the real estate crash in 2008, the insurance company decided not to go forward with a real estate project and the joint venture was terminated. In April 2013, the developers sued the insurance company and related entities, asserting claims of conspiracy, negligent misrepresentation, intentional misrepresentation/fraud, intentional interference with prospective economic advantage, and unjust enrichment, claiming that the insurance company induced the plaintiffs to enter into the venture, and further claiming several million dollars in damages.

Sheri and Chad filed a motion to dismiss the complaint under FRCP 12(b)(6) and 9(b). The Court granted the motion on the basis that the plaintiffs had not sufficiently alleged how the insurance company’s acts caused the complained-of damages. The District Court noted that the cause of the losses, on all sides, was the real estate market crash. Accordingly, the Court dismissed the complaint with prejudice and entered judgment in favor of our clients.

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