Delaware’s business court to lose long-serving judge

By Thomson Reuters Feb 15, 2024 | 12:39 PM

WILMINGTON, Delaware (Reuters) – Delaware’s nationally important Court of Chancery, which has come under criticism from Elon Musk this month, is losing its second-longest-serving judge.

Sam Glasscock, who has served on the go-to venue for U.S. corporate disputes since 2011, plans to retire in December, Sean O’Sullivan, chief of community relations for the courts, said in an email.

Glasscock did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Glasscock last year oversaw litigation over Sculptor Capital Management’s acquisition of Rithm Capital Corp. In 2016, in one of his highest-profile rulings, he said Energy Transfer Equity could walk away from its more than $20 billion takeover of rival pipeline operator Williams Cos.

The court specializes in corporate litigation, including Musk’s failed bid to walk away from his $44 billion deal for Twitter.

The court was thrust into the spotlight last month when its chief judge, Chancellor Kathaleen McCormick, voided Musk’s $56 billion compensation from Tesla. Following the ruling, Musk said he planned to ask Tesla shareholders to move the carmaker’s corporate home to Texas from Delaware, where nearly all large publicly traded companies are chartered.

Glasscock is the midst of a second 12-year term. The longest-serving judge is Travis Laster who joined the court in 2009.

A replacement will be nominated by Governor John Carney and must be confirmed by the state’s senate.

(Reporting by Tom Hals in Wilmington, Delaware; Editing by Bill Berkrot)