In Tang Capital Partners v. Norton, C.A. No. 7476 -VCG (Del. Ch. Aug. 31, 2012), the Court of Chancery addressed the standards under Court of Chancery Rule 54(b) that would justify the classification of a decision as “final” for purposes of allowing an appeal, on less than all of the claims in a case or against less than all of the parties, such as a decision granting partial summary judgment. Among the concerns for judicial administration are “piecemeal appeals”.
This letter ruling also addresses issue of when to bring to the attention of the court the argument of whether a ruling will qualify for Rule 54(b) finality. The issue in this matter was initially discussed at the time of oral argument when a bench ruling was made. It was not raised, however, a short time later when a written decision was issued. This matter features the Delaware Supreme Court directing the appellant to ask the trial court to specifically address Rule 54(b) after a Notice of Appeal had already been filed. Thus, this summary represents the Court of Chancery’s decision upon application for Rule 54(b) finality–which was denied for the reasons explained in this 6-page letter decision.