Tesla legal team looks to delay July hearing in Musk comp package case

MINISTÉRIO DAS COMUNICAÇÕES, CC BY 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Elon Musk’s lawyers are seeking a delay in a hearing that would determine the legal fees that will be awarded to the legal team who challenged the CEO’s 2018 Performance Award. Tesla’s legal team noted that a recent shareholder vote which ratified Musk’s 2018 compensation plan impacts what remains to be decided in the case. 

Tesla filed a motion on Friday requesting a postponement of the July 8th hearing, as noted in a Bloomberg News report. With the results of the 2024 Annual Stockholders’ Meeting in mind, Tesla noted that a delay in the hearing date would be pertinent so that its legal team could lay out the implications of the TSLA shareholders’ vote

“Defendants respectfully submit that this Court should vacate the current Scheduling Order. In its place, the Court should enter an order setting forth an expeditious schedule to address the impact of the Ratification. Defendants will move for entry of judgment in their favor based upon the Ratification and propose to submit that motion and an opening brief of no more than 14,000 words on June 28, 2024.,” Tesla’s legal team wrote.

Delaware Chancery Court Judge Kathaleen St. J. McCormick is expected to hear arguments on whether the lawyers of Tesla shareholder Richard Tornetta — who filed the case against Musk’s 2018 pay package — should be awarded billions of dollars in Tesla stock, equivalent to over $200,000 per hour. Recent filings from Tornetta’s attorneys indicated that the lawyers are willing to drop their requested payment to $1.44 billion in legal fees, or $73,948 per hour, for their work in the case. 

Tesla has argued that Tornetta’s lawyers should just be paid about $13.6 million for their work. A longtime Tesla shareholder has also secured legal representation to oppose the requested legal fees of Tornetta’s attorneys.

Delaying the next hearing in the case would likely push back Judge McCormick’s decision surrounding the fees that would be awarded to Tornetta’s lawyers. The Judge is poised to rule on the Plaintiff’s legal fees before she can issue a final judgment on the case. Judge McCormick’s final judgment could clear the way for Elon Musk and Tesla to appeal to the Delaware Supreme Court if needed. 

The fling from Tesla’s legal team can be viewed below (via Plainsite).

gov.uscourts.delch.2018-0408-KSJM.386.0 by Simon Alvarez on Scribd

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Simon Alvarez: Simon is a reporter with a passion for electric cars and clean energy. Fascinated by the world envisioned by Elon Musk, he hopes to make it to Mars (at least as a tourist) someday.
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