Hampton Roads Bankshares, Inc. v. Harvard

781 S.E.2d 172 (2016)

From our private database of 46,000+ case briefs, written and edited by humans—never with AI.

Hampton Roads Bankshares, Inc. v. Harvard

Virginia Supreme Court
781 S.E.2d 172 (2016)

CS

Facts

In January 2008, Scott Harvard (plaintiff) entered an employment contract with Hampton Roads Bankshares, Inc. (HRB) (defendant). The contract entitled Harvard to severance benefits if he terminated his employment within six months after a change in control of HRB. On December 31, 2008, HRB acquired Gateway Bank, which constituted a change in control under Harvard’s employment contract. Also on December 31, 2008, HRB entered an agreement with the U.S. Treasury (Treasury) for Treasury to invest directly in HRB pursuant to Treasury’s Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). TARP was authorized by the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (EESA), which was enacted in response to the financial crisis of 2007–2008. As a condition to receiving TARP funding, HRB had to amend its compensation agreements with its senior executive officers—which included Harvard—to comply with EESA, including any subsequent amendments to EESA, and Treasury’s implementing regulations for as long as Treasury maintained its investment in HRB. Initially, this required a slight modification of the severance-benefits provision of Harvard’s employment contract. Harvard agreed to this modification, acknowledging the need to comply with EESA. Following an amendment to EESA in February 2009 and Treasury’s adoption of implementing regulations on June 15, 2009, HRB was prohibited from paying any severance benefits to its senior executive officers if they departed HRB. On June 24, 2009, Harvard terminated his employment with HRB. Pointing to the change in control triggered by HRB’s acquisition of Gateway Bank, Harvard requested to be paid the severance benefits under his employment contract. After being told by Treasury that payment of the severance benefits to Harvard was prohibited by EESA and Treasury’s regulations, HRB refused Harvard’s request. Harvard then sued HRB for breach of contract. HRB asserted the legal prohibition on its payment of the severance benefits as an affirmative defense. Notwithstanding that prohibition, the trial court ordered HRB to pay Harvard the severance benefits. HRB appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Mims, J.)

What to do next…

  1. Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.

    You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 742,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Berkeley, and Northwestern—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students.

    Unlock this case briefRead our student testimonials
  2. Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.

    Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students.

    Learn about our approachRead more about Quimbee

Here's why 742,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:

  • Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 46,000 briefs, keyed to 986 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
  • The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
  • Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
  • Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.

Access this case brief for FREE

With a 7-day free trial membership
Here's why 742,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
  • Reliable - written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students
  • The right length and amount of information - includes the facts, issue, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents
  • Access in your class - works on your mobile and tablet
  • 46,000 briefs - keyed to 986 casebooks
  • Uniform format for every case brief
  • Written in plain English - not in legalese and not just repeating the court's language
  • Massive library of related video lessons - and practice questions
  • Top-notch customer support

Access this case brief for FREE

With a 7-day free trial membership