The global COVID-19 pandemic is now into its third year and it continues to affect the economy and the business environment. The following guest post takes a look at the pandemic’s continuing impact and reviews the possibility that the ongoing effects could increase the number of corporate insolvencies in the UK. This paper was written by Thomas Harris, a Senior Underwriter in the London D&O team of Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance UK; Ben Barker, head of Executive & Professional Lines Claims, Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance UK; James Wickes, a Partner in RPC’s FI/D&O team in London; and Paul Bagon, a Partner in RPC’s Restructuring & Insolvency team in London. A version of this article was recently published as BHSI /RPC client alerts via their LinkedIn homepages. I would like to thank the authors for allowing me to publish their article as a guest post on this site. I welcome guest post submissions from responsible authors on topics of interest to this blog’s readers. Please contact me directly if you would like to submit a guest post. Here is the authors’ article.
Continue Reading Guest Post: COVID-19 and the Impact on UK Corporate Insolvencies

Since the earliest outbreak of the coronavirus in the U.S. in March 2020, I have been tracking the coronavirus-related D&O litigation. There have been D&O suits filed throughout the intervening period, though the nature of the suits and the kinds of allegations have evolved over time. One recent aspect of the changes has been that, as pandemic-related circumstances have blended into general business conditions, it has become increasingly difficult to say with certainty whether certain new suits are or are not pandemic-related. A case in point is a lawsuit filed earlier this week against software company Everbridge, which experienced a recent stock price decline due to a number of circumstances including some that the company itself declared to be pandemic-related. I discuss below my reasons for including this new lawsuit in my tally of coronavirus-related lawsuits. A copy of the complaint filed on April 4, 2022 Central District of California can be found here.
Continue Reading New Securities Suit Against Software Company is in Significant Part COVID-Related

As I have noted in numerous prior posts on this site, over the course of the last two years plaintiffs’ lawyers have filed a host of COVID-19-related securities claims. With the passage of time, many of these cases have now worked their way to the motion to dismiss stage. Although the results have been mixed, the dismissal motions have been granted in several cases. In the latest example of favorable outcome for a COVID-19-related lawsuit defendant, the court in the COVID-19-related securities suit pending against Chembio Diagnostics and its executives recently granted the corporate defendants’ dismissal motion. However, in an odd twist, the court denied the dismissal motion of the company’s offering underwriters. A copy of the court’s February 23, 2022 order in the case can be found here.
Continue Reading COVID-19-Related Securities Suit Against Diagnostic Testing Company Dismissed

Jeff Lubitz
Louis Angelo Panis

As readers of this blog know, an important litigation phenomenon that followed in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak has been the surge of COVID-19 related securities class action lawsuit filings. In this guest post, Jeff Lubitz, Managing Director, and Louis Angelo Panis, Research Analyst, ISS Securities Class Action Services, take a closer look at the coronavirus-related securities class action lawsuits filings and review the status of the cases that have been filed so far. Please note that the date reflected in the article is as of February 15, 2022. A version of this article previously was published as an ISS Securities Class Action Services client alert. I would like to thank the authors for allowing me to publish their article as a guest post on this site. I welcome guest post submissions from responsible authors on topics of interest to this blog’s readers. Please contact me directly if you would like to submit a guest post. Here is the authors’ article.
Continue Reading Guest Post: COVID-19 Update: Investor Related Class Actions

As readers of this blog well know, since the initial U.S. coronavirus outbreak in March 2020, plaintiffs’ lawyers have filed dozens of COVID-19-related securities class action lawsuits. Even though the coronavirus-related litigation phenomenon, like the coronavirus outbreak itself, is about to enter its third year, relatively few of the coronavirus-related securities suits have yet reached the motion to dismiss stage. However, last week the federal judge presiding over the coronavirus-related lawsuit filed against Zoom Video Telecommunications entered an order granting in part and denying in part the defendants’ motion to dismiss. The Court’s February 16, 2022 order, a copy of which can be found here, also presents an interesting perspective on the ways in which privacy and security issues can lead to potential securities law liability exposures.
Continue Reading Zoom Coronavirus-Related Securities Suit Dismissal Motion Denied in Part

In the latest COVID-related securities class action lawsuit, a shareholder plaintiff has filed a securities suit against a clinical-stage pharmaceutical company whose application for emergency use authorization (EUA) for a COVID-19-related treatment therapy was rejected by the FDA. Among other things, this latest filing shows that the wave of coronavirus-related securities lawsuit filings, like the coronavirus itself, show few signs of abatement. A copy of complaint filed on January 18, 2022 against NRx Pharmaceuticals can be found here.
Continue Reading COVID-19-Related Securities Suit Filed Against Pharma Company

As I have noted on this site, even though it has now been nearly 22 months since the initial coronavirus outbreak in the U.S., coronavirus D&O lawsuits have continued to be filed continuously since the initial outbreak. Coronavirus-related securities suits were in fact a significant securities litigation phenomenon in 2021 as well as in 2020. In an early sign that the coronavirus related litigation could remain a significant securities litigation factor in 2022, late last week plaintiffs’ lawyers filed two new securities lawsuits against a health insurance and services company and against a diagnostic testing company. Both companies had completed IPOs earlier in 2021. A copy of the new securities lawsuit against Bright Health Group can be found here and a copy of the new securities suit against Talis Biomedical Corporation can be found here.
Continue Reading First Coronavirus-Related Securities Suits of 2022 Filed

In an opinion written in unusually direct language, a federal district court has denied the motion to dismiss in a coronavirus-related securities class action lawsuit filed against a vaccine development company. However, the motion to dismiss was granted with leave to amend as to the vaccine company’s major outside shareholder. The significant context of the pandemic itself and the swirl of media coverage surrounding it proved to be a significant factor in the court’s denial of the motion to dismiss as to the company defendants. The court’s December 22, 2021 opinion in the Vaxart securities litigation can be found here.
Continue Reading Coronavirus-Related Securities Suit Against Vaccine Company Survives Dismissal Motion

As I monitored the coronavirus-related securities litigation as it has been filed since March 2020, I had observed that the cases generally fell into one of three categories: cases involving companies that had experienced a coronavirus outbreak in their facilities; companies that had claimed that they would be able to profit from the pandemic; and companies whose operations or finances were disrupted by the pandemic. Over the last several weeks, I have observed a new coronavirus-related variant, a fourth category of cases involving companies that had prospered at the outset because of pandemic restrictions, but whose fortunes ebbed as pandemic restrictions eased. Now, two more of these “fourth category” variant cases have been filed, one involving Docusign and one involving Chegg, as detailed below.
Continue Reading Two New Cases of the Latest Coronavirus-Related Securities Suit Variant Filed

As I have noted in prior posts (most recently here), since the outbreak of the coronavirus in the U.S. last March plaintiff shareholders have filed numerous COVID-19-related securities class action lawsuits. Relatively few of these cases have reached the motion to dismiss stage, but the few dismissal motion results so far are decidedly mixed, at best, from the plaintiffs’ perspective. In the latest of these cases to fail to survive the initial pleading hurdle, the court in the COVID-19-related securities suit against biopharma firm Sorrento Therapeutics has granted the defendants’ motion to dismiss, albeit with leave to amend. The court’s November 18, 2021 order can be found here.
Continue Reading COVID-19-Related Securities Suit Against Biophama Company Dismissed