The Court of Chancery rejected a request for post-trial intervention under Court of Chancery Rule 24, in the matter styled Shawe v. Elting, et al., C.A. No. 9686-CB (Del. Ch. Sept. 2, 2105). Rule 24 is a useful rule to be familiar with for corporate and commercial litigation in general.
This is the third decision in this case in about as many weeks. The prior two decisions were highlighted on these pages here. [The post-trial opinion is being appealed to the Delaware Supreme Court.] The court applied federal cases interpreting the federal counterpart to Delaware Court of Chancery Rule 24, and the four factor test used by the federal courts. This decision was somewhat predictable in that the request for intervention was made over a week after a 104-page post-trial opinion was issued in a matter involving several consolidated cases.
The decision observes that the party seeking intervention in this case, after trial, had counsel who attended pre-trial court proceedings and the trial of the matter. The proposed intervenor had a one percent interest in the company that was owned 49% by her son. The other 50% was owned by a third party. A key point made by the court was that the proposed intervenor knew for a very long time that the derivative claims were subject to a defense of unclean hands and acquiescence for actions taken, or not taken, by her son. If she had an argument to make about those defenses, she should have made them more promptly. Motion to Intervene denied.