Commercial Litigation

35+ years experience

From its inception in bankruptcy, Jennis Morse has handled complicated cases where the law, financial concerns, and business strategy converge. Our firm is uniquely positioned to provide legal advice on a wide variety of complex business litigation. Shareholder/partner disputes, and most matters involving lending and capital disagreements, are well within our expertise.

What is commercial litigation? A legal filing in which at least one of the parties is a business entity such as a corporation or partnership. It’s a subset of civil litigation, which is a lawsuit in which no criminal charges are involved. Let’s examine some of the reasons commercial litigation might be filed:

Breach of Contract

Failure to comply with a contract by one or more of the parties involved.

Fraud and misrepresentations

Intentionally misleading or deceitful behavior on the part of a defendant.

Intellectual property disputes

Misuse of an organization’s trade secrets, copyrights, trademarks, patents, and/or other intellectual property.


Damaging a party’s reputation through libel (written defamation) or slander (oral defamation) can precipitate this type of commercial litigation.

Premises Liability

This type of commercial litigation is precipitated by an injury to a party on a property owned by a business.

Breach of Fiduciary Duty

Arises when a party with fiduciary duty to a business acts to enrich himself, or in another manner that is inconsistent with the position of trust.

Shareholder or Partner Disputes

Can arise when one or more owners of a company are accused of prioritizing their interests over that of the company, or other dishonest behavior that damages the company or its stakeholders.

Breach of Warranty

When a defendant is accused of making false statements about a product sold, whereby the plaintiff was harmed or inconvenienced by relying on those statements.


Analogous to criminal theft, but in a civil context, this is a situation in which the plaintiff claims to have lost property for which an agreement had been made.

There are many other types of commercial litigation, ranging from tax disputes and product liability claims to antitrust cases, construction disputes, employment disagreements, and many more. The list is long, and these types of litigation can be complex, requiring experienced legal representation.

Wide-Ranging Expertise

With wide-ranging knowledge in multiple fields, in addition to legal expertise — including finance, business, and real estate — Jennis Morse attorneys can “speak many languages” and use that varied skill set to benefit clients involved in commercial litigation. Dave Jennis in particular has tried several cases and has even been qualified to testify as an expert witness.

Commercial litigation can arise outside of the context of bankruptcy, sometimes as a prelude to an eventual bankruptcy filing. In some cases, successful resolution of such litigation can help avoid bankruptcy.

35+ years experience

Financial Expertise

Jennis Morse’s litigation department has a strong understanding of capital, banking, and finance. Their expertise and experience allows a deeper understanding of the client’s business situation, informing and elevating the legal strategy.

In commercial litigation cases, especially, this knowledge delivers dividends to the client. The team can examine balance sheets, income statements, profit and loss statements, appraisal documents, valuation reports, and more in order to better understand how the client’s company is run and where financial issues first started. This provides the client with fresh insight into the issues and events that led to commercial litigation or bankruptcy.

Additional value to the client comes through their understanding the business structure of their organization to frame the legal strategy in a broader context. This provides clients with more options to achieve financial solvency. It’s a nimble, consultative approach that looks at the entire business model of the client to find solutions.

Real Estate Expertise

Another area of expertise for Jennis Morse is real estate, including civil property rights and land use litigation. Since bankruptcy can often involve real estate holdings, this is a significant benefit for clients.

Litigation Experience

The Jennis Morse team has extensive experience working in front of bankruptcy judges as well as state and federal court judges. With a confident, aggressive approach proven to deliver results for clients — particularly debtors (a person or institution that owes money to another) — the emphasis is on protecting the client’s interests at every turn.

If a bankruptcy case becomes litigious, having this in-house experience can prove invaluable, because many bankruptcy lawyers don’t spend much time working in front of a judge.

A Strategic Partnership

The first benefit a Jennis Morse client sees is a savings in time, as the team uses its diverse experience to hit the ground running.

Beyond a quick start, this strategic, consultant-type approach delivers longer-term benefits, especially for clients reorganizing themselves in the middle of financial difficulties. It’s the difference between just looking at the letter of the law on bankruptcy cases and delivering a holistic appraisal of a client’s needs. The results can be long-lasting, especially for clients working to keep their business running during a litigious bankruptcy.

In a bankruptcy case that moves to the courtroom, clients receive the resources of both sides of the Jennis Morse house — bankruptcy and litigation — in a one-two punch. The two departments work closely together to deliver expertise and to provide the resources for which other firms must subcontract.

The experience of attorney Dave Jennis, one of the firm’s partners and founders, is key in delivering value to clients because of his holistic approach to solving problems. This involves cases that remain in the form of commercial litigation, as well as those that proceed to bankruptcy. Clients can also expect closer strategic involvement and responsiveness from Jennis and his partners than at larger law firms.