Having still yet to recover from a couple of long flights over the weekend, and walking in the door at nearly 3:00 am Sunday night (Monday morning), it was back out on the "road" yesterday morning. I awoke at 4:30 am to catch an early flight down to Miami for a settlement conference. Of course, the flight was delayed 2+ hours, which meant I did not land until 12:30, and had to rush to make the 1:30 meeting downtown. Who needs lunch, right?
We're trying to settle a case "pre-litigation." In short, our client is a big public company. They were sued years ago in a series of putative class action securities fraud and ERISA claims. To date, they've incurred excess of $15 million in attorneys' fees defending against these underlying claims. Our client purchased D&O insurance, as well as Fiduciary Liability Insurance, to cover this very scenario (i.e., pay the company's defense costs and potential settlements/judgments for these types of lawsuits). But, of course, while insurers are quick to collect premiums, they rarely pay claims. And that's where we come in ...
So, after literally years of letter writing, conference calls and the like, we all finally sat down in room together to see if we could resolve our difference without going to court. We had the assistant general counsel of our client present, along with our client's lead underlying securities lawyer. The bad guys had its (three) lawyers and corporate representative, who had flown in from London. We all sat across the table from each other and spent several hours explaining why the other guy was full of shit. Then, when it reached the point where tempers overcame the ability to reason, we spat out some numbers to see whether we were in a ballpark where a deal might get done. Nothing was reached yesterday; but I'm hopefully we'll resolve this in the next few weeks. I love our case; and I love suing insurers. I'm not afraid to litigate this one. But if you can reach a good settlement, and eliminate litigation risk, why not? Also, as this is a full contingency case, a quick result with a good number would be sweet.
Anyhow, before we left, I got to stare out the conference room window for a brief moment . . . wishing I was in board shorts on South Beach (in the background), rather than in a suit on the 42nd floor of a high-rise . . .
The meeting broke about 6:00, and I made it to my 7:30 flight just as the gate was closing. In fact, the dude at the gate was paging me ("Last call for Pete P. Peters . . . .") as I scrambled through the airport. Who needs dinner . . . I rolled in the front door around 11:00 and went right to sleep.
And now I'm ready for some degeneracy. I briefly thought about flying to Vegas tomorrow night. But the connections on the remaining available flights were all very tight, and I didn't feel like stressing over it. So, instead, I'm heading down to the Jersey Shore tomorrow afternoon for 3-days of monkey mashing at Harrah's. I may even get in a little poker this trip. I'm still looking to play the Saturday night tournament at the new poker room at Bally's. . . . Maybe this will be the week.