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Virginia statute of limitations holds in Evansville radio purchase

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Nearly identical provisions in business agreements meant a media owner had to file his complaint against another communications company by the statute of limitations deadline in Virginia, not in Indiana.

In 2000 and 2002, Alan Brill, owner of radio stations and newspaper in medium markets including Evansville, signed confidentiality agreements with Regent Communications Inc. as part of the negotiations to sell his radio stations. Both contracts contain nearly identical choice of law language that the provisions will be interpreted under the laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Brill and Regent disputed the scope of the choice of law language when negotiations fell apart.

In August 2008, Brill filed a complaint against Regent and other defendants for breach of contract, fraud and additional acts of malfeasance. A month later, he filed an amended complaint. In January 2009, he filed a second amended complaint naming Regent as the sole defendant.

Regent responded in August 2010 by filing an Indiana Trial Rule 12(B)(6) motion to dismiss Brill’s second amended complaint. The company claimed Brill had filed after the Virginia five-year statute of limitations had expired.

The trial court denied the motion and Regent appealed.

Before the Indiana Court of Appeals, Brill argued the choice of law provision applied only to substantive law and that Indiana law applied to procedural issues. Therefore, he filed his second amended complaint well within the Indiana six-year statute of limitations.

Regents countered that Virginia law applied in both substantive and procedural matters.

The Court of Appeals agreed with Regent and reversed the denial of the motion to dismiss in Alan R. Brill, Business Management Consultants, LP f/k/a/ Brill Media Company, LP, and the Non-Debtor Companies v. Regent Communications, Inc., n/k/a Townsquare Media, Inc., 82A01-1304-PL-174.

Pointing to OrbusNeich Med. Co. v. Boston Scientific Corp., 694 F. Supp. 2d 106 (D. Mass. 2010), the COA found the additional phrase in the Brill-Regent agreements indicated the parties’ intent that Virginia law governs both substantive and procedural issues.

 
 

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  1. Paul Ogden doing a fine job of remembering his peer Gary Welsh with the post below and a call for an Indy gettogether to celebrate Gary .... http://www.ogdenonpolitics.com/2016/05/indiana-loses-citizen-journalist-giant.html Castaways of Indiana, unite!

  2. It's unfortunate that someone has attempted to hijack the comments to promote his own business. This is not an article discussing the means of preserving the record; no matter how it's accomplished, ethics and impartiality are paramount concerns. When a party to litigation contracts directly with a reporting firm, it creates, at the very least, the appearance of a conflict of interest. Court reporters, attorneys and judges are officers of the court and must abide by court rules as well as state and federal laws. Parties to litigation have no such ethical responsibilities. Would we accept insurance companies contracting with judges? This practice effectively shifts costs to the party who can least afford it while reducing costs for the party with the most resources. The success of our justice system depends on equal access for all, not just for those who have the deepest pockets.

  3. As a licensed court reporter in California, I have to say that I'm sure that at some point we will be replaced by speech recognition. However, from what I've seen of it so far, it's a lot farther away than three years. It doesn't sound like Mr. Hubbard has ever sat in a courtroom or a deposition room where testimony is being given. Not all procedures are the same, and often they become quite heated with the ends of question and beginning of answers overlapping. The human mind can discern the words to a certain extent in those cases, but I doubt very much that a computer can yet. There is also the issue of very heavy accents and mumbling. People speak very fast nowadays, and in order to do that, they generally slur everything together, they drop or swallow words like "the" and "and." Voice recognition might be able to produce some form of a transcript, but I'd be very surprised if it produces an accurate or verbatim transcript, as is required in the legal world.

  4. Really enjoyed the profile. Congratulations to Craig on living the dream, and kudos to the pros who got involved to help him realize the vision.

  5. Why in the world would someone need a person to correct a transcript when a realtime court reporter could provide them with a transcript (rough draft) immediately?

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