Commercial Litigation

Jon Lakey and John Cook, along with Carl Jacobson, bring a wealth of experience and distinct backgrounds to serve the WCL’s commercial clients. Jon Lakey has worked at three firms in Memphis, of varying size, which allowed him an opportunity to work along and learn directly from some of the lions of the Memphis bar. Moreover, over the last two decades he has helped lead the State of Tennessee through three of its largest institutional reform cases in the history of the state. In addition to his J.D., John Cook is a Certified Public Accountant who was a tax consultant with a “Big Four” accounting firm, and began his legal career with a top ten law firm in Houston before moving back to Memphis in the late 1990s. He has had a long history of representing businesses in commercial transactions, tax matters, and complex litigation when necessary. Carl Jacobson has been a partner at two large Memphis law firms, represented employers and employees in employment disputes, and companies in all types of commercial disputes. He also gained keen insight of what it like to run substantial businesses though his tenure at Gate Gourmet International and Lenny’s Franchise Systems, where he served as General Counsel.

Commercial Litigation
In a case they filed in March 2015, Jon Lakey and John Cook represented a company in a dispute involving over 4 million dollars that their clients asserted were due and owing to it. In well under two years, after extensive litigation in an out-of-state court, including motion practice and depositions, Mr. Lakey and Mr. Cook were able to forge a settlement that returned to their client every dollar it had sought in the lawsuit, as well as reimbursement for every dollar of its attorneys’ fees. While the identity of this client and the precise terms of the settlement are confidential, this type of result is not new for this duo.

For instance in two separate cases in the Western District of Tennessee, Mr. Lakey and Mr. Cook obtained summary judgment decisions on behalf of their clients that resulted in complete and resounding victories for their clients, along with awards of attorneys’ fees which is a rare occurrence in cases of these types. First, in Medison America v. Preferred Medical, 548 F.Supp.2d 567 (W.D. Tenn. 2007), they successfully defended their client against Lanham Act claims, obtained a dismissal on summary judgment, including the award of attorney’s fees to their client (in the sum of over $200,000.00) against the plaintiffs. See linked Opinion. Also linked are an Opinion and Order with regard to the award of fees. They defended this decision through appeal at the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, which upheld the district court decision on all points. Medison v Preferred Medical, 357 Fed. Appx. 656 (6th Cir. 2009). See linked Opinion from 6th Circuit. Similarly, in Genesis Financial v. National Capital Management, 2011 WL 4955319 (W.D. Tenn. 2011), Mr. Lakey and Mr. Cook successfully obtained summary judgment in favor of their client on complex contractual claims. See linked Opinion from District Court. Again, their client in this matter received a rare award of attorneys’ fees for prevailing against the plaintiff’s claims.

Mr. Cook also has obtained several notable results in tax cases. For example, in Carter v. U.S., 216 F.Supp.2d 700 (W.D. Tenn. 2002) his client succeeded in a wrongful levy action against the IRS by demonstrating the priority of an ex-spouse’s interest in marital property over an IRS Federal Tax Lien. In the same case, Mr. Cook’s client obtained one of the very few taxpayer-favorable constitutional due process rulings involving the IRS. Carter v. U.S., 110 Fed. Appx. 591 (6th Cir. 2004). See linked Opinion from 6th Circuit.

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