On My Soft Spot for Plaintiffs’ Lawyers

by F.

Suits like these restore my hope in the plaintiff’s bar:

A group of shareholders of Home Depot Inc. on Wednesday tried to block, at least for now, the world’s largest home improvement store chain from paying former Chief Executive Bob Nardelli any more of his $210 million severance package.

The request for a temporary restraining order was made in Fulton County Superior Court by the shareholders as part of a previously filed lawsuit alleging that the Atlanta-based company overpaid senior executives and backdated stock options in violation of their fiduciary duties.

There was no immediate ruling on the request. Home Depot spokesman Jerry Shields said the company had not received the motion and couldn’t comment.

Nardelli resigned after six years at Home Depot’s helm last week amid a furor over his pay and a lagging stock price. Nardelli was replaced by Vice Chairman Frank Blake.

The shareholders say if the restraining order is not granted, a trust should be imposed to prevent Nardelli from using for his own benefit the money from the severance package until the lawsuit is resolved.

The lead plaintiff is the city of Pontiac, Mich.’s employee retirement fund, which holds Home Depot shares.

From AP.