Going to Great Lengths for a Commission
A U.S.-based investment bank earned itself a payday when it brokered the sale of an energy facility in Spain. Just one problem: as the closing date approached, the buyer and seller began acting coy, suggesting they were going to cut the bank out of its commission.
With the buyer located in Japan and the seller in Chile, the bank became nervous about securing its payment. Slarskey wasted no time in protecting its clients' interests—in fact, the firm didn’t even take Christmas Day off. On December 25th, Slarskey tracked down a judge in the Southern District of New York and made the bold request for a TRO (temporary restraining order) on the closing in Madrid.
The bank hardly had an obvious case for an injunction like a TRO, which requires a showing of “irreparable injury,” not just entitlement to dollars. The international nature of the transaction further complicated the proceeding. Nonetheless, Slarskey secured the TRO, which required that the bank be paid its commission directly out of escrow at closing.
As Slarskey has successfully argued in this case and others, the right to be paid a commission out of escrow is a unique right that can be protected through injunction. Here, the TRO that Slarskey won obviated the need for the bank to chase down its foreign counterparties, with no guarantee of recovery.