On September 21, 2022, a cross-office and combined trial and appellate team secured a complete victory on behalf of client LivaNova in the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, successfully getting a $1.38 million jury verdict against LivaNova reversed and granted judgment as a matter of law in favor of LivaNova.
The case arose out of the departure of a disgruntled LivaNova sales representative. LivaNova had hired the sales representative to market and sell its cardiac-rhythm management devices. The sales representative's sales were not as prolific as she hoped, so upon departure from LivaNova, she sued the company for breach of contract and fraudulent inducement, alleging that LivaNova defrauded her into accepting the sales representative position. At trial, the sales representative claimed millions of dollars in lost profits.
During the four-day jury trial in the District of Colorado, the plaintiff only presented testimony from three witnesses in support of her entire case, and none addressed the issue of damages with any degree of certainty or precision. As a result, the Faegre Drinker trial team won a defense verdict on the breach of contract claim and won judgment as a matter of law on a motion at the close of the plaintiff's case to exclude all of the plaintiff's claimed post-contract damages, which amounted to millions in claimed lost profits. The jury ultimately awarded $1.38 million on the plaintiff's fraud claim for damages for the commissions the sales representative claimed to have lost, and LivaNova appealed.
On appeal, Faegre Drinker led the briefing and argued the case. After full briefing and oral argument, the Tenth Circuit agreed with LivaNova that the damages evidence was too speculative and conjectural to support the jury's damages award. The Tenth Circuit also agreed with LivaNova that judgment should be entered in its favor and that there should be no new trial on damages.