The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a published opinion on Feb. 1, not only affirming a Womble Bond Dickinson trial win, but vacating the judgment in part and remanding it for a determination of whether Womble’s client, Gregory Packaging, should have won more.

The Womble Bond Dickinson trial and appellate teams included Russ Ferguson, Emily Doll, and Sam Hartzell.

Womble client Gregory Packaging, Inc., a manufacturer of juice, was originally sued for approximately $1 million in unpaid rebates to group purchasing giant Foodbuy, Inc., a subsidiary of Compass Group, the world’s largest contract food service firm.  Gregory Packaging counter-sued and, after a trial in federal court, not only did not have to pay $1 million, but won a $9.2 million judgment in its favor.

Foodbuy appealed the judgment on multiple grounds.  After oral argument, the Fourth Circuit issued a published opinion affirming the district court and Gregory Packaging’s $9.2 million win.

However, at the same time, Gregory Packaging cross-appealed, arguing that the district court should have found a violation of North Carolina’s Unfair and Deceptive Trade Practices Act and awarded treble damages as a result.  On that issue, the Fourth Circuit of Appeals vacated the district court, ordering it to consider Gregory Packaging’s originally-denied claim for Unfair and Deceptive Trade Practices “in the first instance through a fresh lens.” The district court is expected to decide on the issue later this year.

A former federal prosecutor, Russ Ferguson represents clients in a broad range of complex litigation matters, focusing both on white collar criminal defense and complex business litigation. His practice includes representing clients at all stages of federal and state litigation, including on appeal. He also guides clients in international arbitration.

Emily Doll focuses her practice on international arbitration and commercial litigation. She has assisted in the representation of clients in all phases of litigation and arbitration, and has experience with investor-state and international commercial arbitrations under the rules of a variety of leading international institutions, including ICSID, PCA, SIAC, SCAI and UNCITRAL.

Sam Hartzell is an experienced litigator who uses his federal clerkship experience at the trial and appellate levels to help businesses resolve complex, high-stakes disputes.