The most noteworthy point of this short letter ruling in which a former corporate officer is granted advancement pursuant to Section 145 of the Delaware General Corporation Law, in Kolokotrones v. Ninja Metrics, Inc., C.A. No. 12413-VCS (Del. Ch. Dec. 18, 2017), is that the court rejected an argument based on the fact that the underlying litigation for which advancement was sought had been concluded by the time that a formal order granting advancement was entered on the docket. Although in theory, when the underlying claim that gave rise to any advancement right was dismissed or finally concluded, arguably that claim for advancement then became a claim for indemnification, assuming that the party seeking advancement prevailed, the court found that argument unpersuasive based on the procedural posture of this case.
The court explained that otherwise it would be placing form over substance and benefiting the defending party for its procedural “machinations.” In addition, the court did not want to reward the delay of the defending party to the detriment of the party seeking advancement.
Moreover, the original decision in this case was rendered as a bench ruling, and the letter ruling that denied a motion for reargument explained that the original decision had granted fees on fees. Thus, notwithstanding a prior final resolution of the underlying litigation that gave rise to the advancement claim, because fees on fees were granted for the advancement claim, simply because the underlying litigation concluded, does not, in the court’s words: “under any view of the world, moot that claim.”