The longstanding litigation between Macy’s and J.C. Penney appears to have finally reached a conclusion. This case received some notoriety because it involved two large retailers fighting over one woman: Martha Stewart. While Stewart and Macy’s resolved their differences in 2013, the dispute between the two companies was still pending.
On June 16, the New York Supreme Court issued a judgment in favor of Macy’s against J.C. Penney on the basis of tortious interference. The Court determined that the conduct of the executives “exceeded the minimum level of ethical behavior” that should be expected. Though the Court declined to find that the level of conduct warranted punitive damages, compensatory damages and, potentially, attorney’s fees will be awarded.
The Court described the behavior of the executives as being “adolescent hijinks in the worst form.” All too often, executives think they can conduct themselves with impunity, but this is simply not the case.