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Mark T. Hurst

Work Highlights

Construction Claim by Developer

In one of Louisville’s up and coming neighborhoods, a developer was left with a defective venue, resulting in SKO filing a lawsuit on behalf of the developer against several subcontractors and arbitration was initiated against the general contractor. Issues included improper design, failure to adhere to specifications and generally poor workmanship.  After investigation and discovery, SKO successfully settled the matter on terms that resulted in the developer recovering nearly 20% of its purchase price back from the contractors.

Construction Claim by Homeowner

After a construction remediation project left the homeowners with a terrible odor in their home, SKO filed a lawsuit on behalf of the homeowners against the general contractor and a subcontractor, among other defendants. SKO settled the lawsuit on extremely favorable terms to its client, recovering over $500,000 in their favor, which was actually greater than the appraised value of the home.

Breach of Fiduciary Duty Defense

SKO successfully lead counsel in defense of a majority business owner against claims of breach of fiduciary duty and judicial dissolution. The company was not dissolved and SKO’s client received a favorable buyout before any discovery occurred.

Successful Separation of Dentistry Practice

Mark Hurst lead counsel in navigating the separation of a dentistry practice on terms that were favorable to SKO’s client in a fiduciary dispute.

Successful Jurisdictional Defense for Manufacturing Client

SKO successfully challenged the personal jurisdictional grounds for a lawsuit brought in federal court against a larger steel supplier. After complete briefing by multiple parties, the federal court dismissed SKO’s client from the lawsuit on personal jurisdiction grounds.

Construction Litigation Pursuit

SKO successfully recovered a substantial amount of money on behalf of its client, an owner of senior care facility, in a construction defect case. SKO filed claims on behalf of its client against the general contractor, subcontractors and suppliers, ultimately settling on confidential terms that provided a net recovery close to SKO’s client’s demand for recovery.

Construction Litigation Defense

SKO defended a general contractor in claims brought by the owner relating to a multi-billion dollar project in Canada involving the construction of a hydroelectric generating facility. Litigation took three years but after multiple settlement negotiations, SKO’s client successfully settled the case for a fraction of the amount demanded by the owner.

Successful Recovery Against Family’s Personal Trustee in Breach of Fiduciary Duty Case

After two beneficiaries suspected wrongdoing by their brother-trustee, SKO pursued claims on behalf of the two beneficiaries, including misappropriation and conversion. After investigating the actions of the brother-trustee, SKO negotiated a settlement on behalf of its clients to receive over three times the amount they were set to receive under the testamentary documents.

Successful Separation of Podiatrist Practice

SKO successfully negotiated the separation of a podiatrist practice on behalf of SKO’s client on extremely favorable terms to SKO’s client who had faced allegations of breach of fiduciary duty.

Successful Estate Recovery for Non-Profit Organization

Lead counsel in lawsuit involving dispute over gift to non-profit organization from a decedent’s estate. SKO successfully negotiated a settlement for its non-profit client that resulted in the client receiving nearly the entire gifted amount.

Defense of Alleged Breach of Fiduciary Duty in an LLC

SKO defended the majority member of a medical billing company from multiple claims of usurping corporate opportunities and breach of fiduciary duty.  Counterclaims were filed against the plaintiffs alleging breach of fiduciary. The case was quickly settled on favorable terms to SKO's client, resulting in the majority member being the sole owner of the company.

Defense of Majority Shareholder Against Breach of Fiduciary Duty Charges

SKO defended a majority shareholder against multiple claims of breach of fiduciary duty, self-dealing and fraud stemming from multiple construction and land use projects.  The case was litigated over the course of four years, with the plaintiffs eventually agreeing to settle the dispute for a small fraction of their demand.

Probate of Holographic Will

Successfully settled a case on behalf of beneficiaries to a holographic will for a $4.5 million estate where the probate court had originally declined to admit the will to probate.

Product Liability: Negligent Design, Manufacture, and Maintenance of Heavy Equipment

Successfully represented the estate, widow, and children of a farm employee killed while operating heavy machinery. Matter settled for policy limits prior to filing suit.

Premises Liability: Alleged Negligent Failure to Maintain Safe Business Premises

Obtained a Summary Judgment dismissal on behalf of a manufacturing client, based upon Kentucky’s “Up the Ladder” defense. Plaintiff truck driver, who had slipped and fallen, claimed that the premises were not appropriately maintained.

Nuisance Claims

The firm represented several land owners being sued by neighboring property owners both individually and as a class for an alleged nuisance related to odors emanating from hog barns. The plaintiffs claimed that the odors unreasonably interfered with their enjoyment of property. The case was before the United States District Court for the Western District of Kentucky where it ultimately settled just before trial. Powell v. Tosh, No. 5:09-CV-00121-TBR-DW (W.D. Ky.).

Major Electric Transmission Project

Collaborated with a longtime electric utility client to plan and coordinate the acquisition of more than 100 parcels of real estate in three counties for a 41-mile electric transmission line.  Our assistance began in the early planning stages of the project and carried through agreed-upon acquisitions, challenges to the right to condemn, appeals and valuation litigation. 

Marcellus Joint Venture for Oil and Natural Gas Producer

A joint venture for a major oil and natural gas producer’s Marcellus shale acreage; the producer to receive aggregate payments of $3.4 billion; SKO performed due diligence and prepared transaction documents.

Utica Joint Venture for Oil and Natural Gas Producer

A joint venture for a major oil and natural gas producer’s Utica shale acreage; the producer to receive aggregate payments of $594 million; SKO performed due diligence and prepared transaction documents.

Motor Vehicle Accident: Alleged Negligent Maintenance of Street Light

Obtained a unanimous defense jury verdict on behalf of a public utility. The plaintiff claimed that the utility failed to properly maintain a street light, which caused a motor vehicle accident. This is the first and only case of its kind to be tried to a jury in Kentucky, subsequent to decision by Kentucky Supreme Court allowing such causes of action.