Most industries have a handful of veterans who have been around long enough to provide immense value. Under the big tent that is the entertainment industry, lies the smaller tent that is the circus. Today’s circus world knows Larry Solheim as a veteran in the industry. Mr. Solheim has long worked in the industry and now serves in many executive functions.
In 2015, Mr. Solheim claims that he was hired to pull the failing Big Apple Circus from the grips of bankruptcy. He served as vice president and general manager while his wife served in an administrative role. When things continued going south, Mr. Solheim claims that promises made to him were not kept by the partners. Eventually, a new CEO reportedly fired Solheim, and his wife “…without warning, or discussion of any performance problems.”
Solheim and his wife are suing for breach of contract and fiduciary duty, unjust enrichment, and more.
Let’s look at what those terms mean, and how proof of such wrongdoing can benefit employees.
Breach of contract
A contract is everything in a capitalist society. A contract details the transfer of money between hands. Contracts are extremely common in business. When set up properly, they are legally binding. A breach occurs when one of the parties involved fails to fulfill their obligation as outlined in the contract.
Breach of fiduciary duty
Board members and executives within an organization have an obligation to act in each other’s best interests. Acting against another party’s best interests may result in a breach.
Someone may be responsible of unjust enrichment if they’ve made financial gains at the expense of another person. If deemed broken in the court of law, restitution may be ordered.
Solheim, the industry veteran, will have to wait to find out how the eyes of the court view his case.