Cleary Gottlieb Discusses Non-Disparagement Clauses

In September, former Uber executive Eric Alexander filed a complaint (the “Complaint”) against another former Uber executive, Rachel Whetstone. The Complaint alleges breach of a mutual non-disparagement clause in Whetstone’s separation agreement with Uber; a clause that Whetstone, during her negotiation with Uber, apparently insisted specifically name Alexander and preclude them from disparaging each other. In the Complaint, Alexander alleges that he is a third party beneficiary of the contract and can therefore enforce the non-disparagement obligation against Whetstone.

The Complaint, filed in California state court, alleges that Whetstone disseminated false and/or misleading information to reporters and others about Alexander’s … Read more

New Year’s Resolutions for Director Compensation from Investors Bancorp

In recent years, shareholder plaintiffs have brought a series of claims before the Delaware Court of Chancery alleging that directors of Delaware companies have abused their discretion in granting themselves excessive equity compensation for their board service.  These cases raised the threshold question of whether the plaintiffs’ challenges should be reviewed under the “entire fairness” standard, which requires the company to bear the burden of proving that the director awards were fair, or the more deferential “business judgment” standard, which grants considerable discretion to directors’ decisions, often resulting in dismissal of claims that fail to plead particularized facts indicating fiduciary … Read more