Salt Lake City Business Litigation Attorneys
Larsen & Rico is a Salt Lake City business litigation boutique firm with a national level practice. We are a team of trial lawyers who represent numerous local, national and international concerns in trials, appeals, arbitrations and mediations. There are three things we do better than other litigation law firms:
- Trials and appeals. Trials require lead lawyers who think quickly on their feet. Multiple decisions need to be made in seconds, some having significant impact on the outcome of trials. Using cutting-edge technology to simplify difficult concepts for a jury or to streamline witness examinations at trial, we view technology as another opportunity to persuade and present the clearest view of the facts and law in each case. We try cases quickly.
- Strategy and efficiency. Everything we do is designed to be used as evidence at trial. We do not ask questions in depositions that cannot be used at trial, and we do not ask questions in depositions so opposing counsel is able to give the deposition to their witness to practice the answer to every question that will be asked of them at trial.
- Expert witnesses. We communicate with our experts on their level. We focus them on the issues in the case and analyze their work as it progresses. We speak business, especially accounting.
Everything else we do is on par with other law firms. We use outside vendors and other law firms to achieve parity. We have a vendor, for example, to handle document control and production, and to create searchable data bases. This is less expensive than performing this task in house. If we need additional legal talent, we have lawyers from other firms join our team. We always have a tax lawyer on tap for settlements.
Our practice includes a full range of complex business disputes ranging from breach of contract to breach of fiduciary duty claims to fraud and embezzlement. We have tried multiple misappropriation of trade secrets cases, sometimes called economic espionage. We have a significant share of all of the business divorce cases: shareholder and member disputes, including dissolution and direct and derivative actions. We always have active real estate and construction disputes. We successfully have handled several attorney malpractice claims. Our cases frequently involve multifaceted accounting, engineering or technological issues.
We are lawyers’ lawyers — the lawyers that other attorneys hire for their personal business problems or turn to for help with difficult and damaged cases.
We do handle commercial landlord/tenant disputes. We, however, do not take residential landlord/tenant disputes.
Our Salt Lake City business litigation attorneys have argued and tried cases before judges and juries in Utah, Idaho, Nevada, Arizona, California, Texas, Florida, Colorado, Wyoming, Minnesota and New York. We represent clients ranging from national and local businesses, to high-end audio manufacturers, and to wealthy individuals and angel investors.
Experienced and Accomplished Salt Lake City Business Litigators
Representing both plaintiffs and defendants, our successes are numerous and our losses are painful (some of our other high-dollar cases were settled with confidentiality provisions and obviously are not included):
- In the Matter of the Estate of Richard L. Barnes: We represented the Personal Representative, one of the heirs. Other heirs claimed Richard L. Barnes lacked testamentary intent to execute Trusts after February of 2014 and claimed the PR unduly influenced Dr. Barnes after that date. This case resolved in mediation. The approach, however, was not to settle the disputes between the heirs, but to renegotiate the terms of the Trust. We offered zero to settle the merits of the case, repeatedly, but then negotiated to unlock assets from the Trust, altering life estates into complete ownership of Arrowhead Dental Lab and its building. This is the largest result of our career and around the fifth or sixth largest settlement or verdict in Utah. We thank Greg Zaugg and Thomas Price for their invaluable help and a special thanks to the mediator, George Haley. (Third Judicial District Court of Salt Lake County, Probate No. 203901182)
- Ross Griffiths v. UDOT: As part of a larger settlement, Mr. Griffiths received a condemnation claim against UDOT for taking of real property located at 12773 South Redwood Road Riverton, Utah, which now is part of Redwood Road. The case settled for the full amount of Jerry Webber’s appraisal, $605,850. It was to our client’s advantage to represent him on an hourly basis and the total fee was under $10K. (Third Judicial District Court of Salt Lake County, Case No. 190909509)
- Industrial Service Holding v. Annette Coester: In this embezzlement case, Lisa C. Rico represented the Third-Party Defendant. After a four day jury trial, the jury awarded a judgment for the full amount requested. The only question the jury asked was whether they could award more damages than requested. After the trial, the jury wanted to award Ms. Rico an academy award for her closing. They said she had swagger. (Third Judicial District Court of Salt Lake County, Case No. 1600902469)
- Mascaro Family Partnership v. Facer: We represented one of the two general partners in the Mascaro Family Partnership in what started as an embezzlement case against its other general partner. Two receivers were appointed in the case, one in charge of the sale of the Family Partnership’s real estate holdings and, due to Tony Mascaro’s incapacity, the other in charge of the litigation. In mediation, we settled the case as part of an agreement to alter the terms of the Family Partnership, in part setting aside $1 million for Tony Mascaro’s medical expenses. We recovered approximately $400K from the Defendant, representing 100% of the amounts claimed, plus interest and attorney fees. A special thanks to the two receivers, David Broadbent and R.L. Knuth, for their excellent work. (Third Judicial District Court of Salt Lake County, Case No. 160903337)
- Kingswick Holdings, LLC v. RS Kingsland, LLC: This was a real estate dispute over the authority of the CEO of SilverLeaf Financial, Kingswick’s manger, to sign a Loan Sale and Assignment Agreement (the “Assignment Agreement”), listing Kingsland as Assignee and Kingswick as Assignor. According to the terms of the Assignment Agreement, RS Kingsland is the assignee of a $5.2 million Promissory Note Kingsland Investments, L.P., executed in favor of Lehman Brothers Bank, FSB, as well as a Deed of Trust and Security Agreement to secure the Promissory Note. The Trust Deed was recorded against a warehouse in St. Louis. The Court initially determined that the CEO did not have actual authority. At the conclusion of a four-day bench trial, however, the Court concluded in a 15-page opinion dated April 11, 2016, that the CEO had apparent authority to execute the Assignment Agreement. The case settled ten day later. (Third Judicial District Court of Salt Lake County, Case No. 140900578)
- Young Electric Sign Co. v. PC Dixon, LLC: On October 28, 2015, in a landslide opinion in favor or YESCO, the Court of Appeal of the State of California, Third Appellate District, reversed a $4 million jury verdict entered against YESCO. C072212.
- Giles Construction, LLC v. Tooele Inventory Solution, Inc.: On June 16, 2015, on a Motion for Summary Judgment, Judge Shelby of the United States District Court for the District of Utah dismissed all claims against our client, Tooele Inventory Solution, including claims for violations of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, the Lanham Act and the Utah Uniform Trade Secret Act. (United States District Court for the District of Utah, Case No. 2:12-cv-37)
- United Producers v. Brokerage 360: On June 10, 2015, at 9:00 p.m., in a complicated Utah Uniform Trade Secret Act case, with over 600 marked exhibits, the jury returned a verdict for the Defendant Brokerage 360 and its owner, Defendant Carl Roestenburg. United Producers asked the jury for $1.2 million for unjust enrichment and received nothing, zero against these key defendants. (Third Judicial District Court of Salt Lake County, Case No. 120905831)
- Arrowhead Dental, Inc. v. Soren McAdam Christenson, LLP, et al.: Arrowhead Dental Laboratories recovered $1.2 million in embezzlement/auditor malpractice lawsuit. The CFO embezzled $770,000 from Arrowhead, but we managed to recover in cash $500K more than the actual loss. (Third Judicial District Court of Salt Lake County, Case No. 100901078 MI)
- RS-ANB Fund, LP v. KMS SPE LLC, et al.: After winning a Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings, RS-ANB Fund, LP recovers more than $3 million in breach of contract litigation. (U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho)
- Bel Canto Design, Ltd. v. MSS HiFi, Inc.: Bel Canto obtains injunction for Lanham Act violations, defeats antitrust claims and obtains $158,963 award of fees and costs. (U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York)
- Tooele Associates, Ltd. v. Tooele City: In a jury trial in the Third Judicial District Court of Salt Lake County, the Jury awarded the developer a $20.1 million verdict against Tooele City in construction and land use matter. This number is remarkable because our damage expert’s calculation topped out at $7 million. We relied on one of the City’s experts, subpoenaed called in our case in chief, to support the amount of the verdict. (The City eventually settled this case, agreeing to pay the entire judgment.)
- Lawyer v. Lawyer: This was intra-family litigation over multiple properties in Summit County. While the settlement is confidential, the motion practice is public. We represented the plaintiff father, Dr. Carl Lawyer. Co-counsel represented the two other plaintiffs, the defendant’s mother and brother. As part of his initial disclosures, defendant produced a four-page agreement he claimed his father signed. From Craig’s List, the brother purchased the defendant’s computer used to draft the Agreement. Lisa C. Rico hired a computer forensic expert who recovered the draft of the Agreement from defendant’s computer and determined that hundreds of changes had been made to the first three pages of the Agreement after the father signed the Agreement and before it was produced in discovery. Ms. Rico filed a Motion for Sanctions based on the fraudulent Agreement, and before the ruling, the case settled. (Third Judicial District Court of Summit County, Case No. 140500330)
Super Lawyers, Utah’s Legal Elite, and AV® rated by Martindale-Hubbell.®
The preceding cases and others are the reason all of Larsen & Rico’s partners have been repeatedly named among Super Lawyers and Utah’s Legal Elite, and are AV® rated by Martindale-Hubbell.® With aggressive and strategic representation of our clients’ needs — and the experience and dedication to back it up — we are master tacticians on your side in the courtroom, whether it’s a trial, an appeal or any other bloodsport. Contact our premier Salt Lake City business attorneys today.