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Corporate Voting Trust – Abuse of Process – Costs

By: WISCONSIN LAW JOURNAL STAFF//February 21, 2023//

Corporate Voting Trust – Abuse of Process – Costs

By: WISCONSIN LAW JOURNAL STAFF//February 21, 2023//

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WI Court of Appeals – District III

Case Name: Nancy A. Scobie v. Patrick S. Scobie

Case No.: 2020AP001937

Officials: Stark, P.J., Hruz and Gill, JJ.

Focus: Corporate Voting Trust – Abuse of Process – Costs

This lawsuit arises out of a family dispute over a voting trust created in 2015 by the shareholders of Mason Companies, Inc., a footwear and apparel company,  Nancy A. Scobie and Timothy (“Tim”) F. Scobie brought suit against Patrick (“Pat”) S. Scobie, Lori A. Geissler, and Daniel (“Dan”) J. Hunt for their “orchestrated and unlawful scheme to secure control over the direction and management of [Mason] for their personal benefit” by creating the voting trust “through … misrepresentations, deception and misconduct.” In response, Dan counterclaimed against Nancy and Tim for abuse of process.

Nancy and Tim appeal from the circuit court’s order denying their motion for partial summary judgment on their claims, granting the Defendants’ motions for summary judgment, and dismissing Nancy and Tim’s claims in their entirety with prejudice. They present five arguments on appeal: (1) the court erred by granting summary judgment on their claim to void the voting trust because of Pat’s misrepresentations; (2) the court erred by concluding that Nancy had no marital property interest in her husband’s stock; (3) the voting trust is void for lack of a proper purpose; (4) Pat and Lori breached their fiduciary duties to Tim and Nancy as trustees of the voting trust; and (5) the court erred by allowing costs to the Defendants not authorized by law. The court also denied Dan’s motion for summary judgment on his abuse of process counterclaim, and Dan cross-appeals on that basis.


Decided 02/14/23

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