Rushing McCarl wins favorable settlement in trade-secrets lawsuit

by Rushing McCarl LLP Dec. 27, 2023

When California-based executive Colynda Williams-Arowolo was sued in Texas by her former employer for supposedly misappropriating trade secrets, she turned the tables by hiring aggressive business litigation boutique Rushing McCarl LLP. Rushing McCarl ultimately secured a settlement in which Ms. Williams didn’t have to pay her former employer a dime. Instead, the employer paid Ms. Williams to settle on the eve of trial.[1]

Plaintiff T2 Modus, a Texas-based company that creates software for auto dealerships, sued Ms. Williams in Denton County, Texas, for supposedly misappropriating T2’s trade secrets. Since Ms. Williams is based in Los Angeles, this meant that T2 dragged her into a lawsuit across the country. Along with suing Williams, T2 was circulating letters about her to companies in her industry. But Williams made T2 pay by hiring Rushing McCarl, an aggressive trial and appellate litigation firm founded by John Rushing and Ryan McCarl, to handle her defense.

Rushing McCarl promptly sent T2 a cease-and-desist letter demanding that it refrain from sending any more letters about Williams, and the letters stopped. The firm then removed the lawsuit from Texas state court to federal court and filed counterclaims based on T2’s failure to pay Williams her full salary during the COVID pandemic. The firm used partner Ryan McCarl’s background as an AI researcher and tech entrepreneur to take a devastating deposition of T2’s lead expert witness, leading to the expert testimony being excluded at trial.

This and other evidentiary motions — including one spearheaded by senior attorney Davit Avagyan that barred T2 from introducing any evidence of damages it had not produced in discovery — shaped a promising battlefield for trial. Settlement negotiations quickly followed. Partner John Rushing, an elite trial attorney and negotiator, turned his attention from preparing an opening argument to negotiating a deal to make Ms. Williams whole. A settlement was finalized just days before the jury was to be empaneled.

The firm’s tireless work allowed Ms. Williams to enjoy a peaceful Christmas with her family. T2 asked the Court to stay the trial while retaining jurisdiction to ensure that T2 and its CEO met their payment obligations to Williams under the settlement agreement.

The case is T2 Modus, LLC v. Colynda Williams-Arowolo, Case No. 4:22-cv-00263-ALM (E.D. Tex., filed Mar. 3, 2022). The Rushing McCarl attorneys who handed the case included John Rushing, Ryan McCarl, Davit Avagyan, and Elisabeth Nations.

[1] See ECF No. 105 (Notice of Settlement and Motion to Stay Trial), T2 Modus, LLC v. Colynda Williams-Arowolo, Case No. 4:22-cv-00263-ALM (E.D. Tex. Dec. 15, 2023) (asking the Court to stay the trial and stating that T2 and its CEO would be paying settlement funds to Williams over the following six months).

Photo credit: Markus Spiske on Unsplash