Shareholders Bring Massive Lawsuit Against NextEra Energy Inc. in Federal Court in Florida
According to a report, a group of shareholders have filed a massive lawsuit against a company called NextEra Energy Inc. in a federal court in Florida. With headquarters in Palm Beach County, NextEra Energy Inc. is one of the nation’s largest energy and infrastructure companies. It is being sued for losses of shareholder value related to the company’s alleged violations of state and federal campaign finance laws. Here, our Miami shareholder rights attorney discusses the lawsuit in more detail.
Background: NextEra Energy Inc. and Campaign Finance Violations
NextEra Energy Inc. is currently dealing with allegations of campaign finance violations involving its subsidiary, Florida Power & Light Co. (FPL). Despite strong financial results, NextEra’s share price fell nearly 9 percent on a single day in January 2023 following disclosures that a top executive of the company would step down in relation to a probe by the Federal Election Commission (FEC).
Among other things, NextEra Energy Inc is accused of using a series of non-profit entities to fund “ghost candidates” in the 2020 election. The watchdog group Citizens for Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington filed a lawsuit against NextEra Energy Inc and its subsidiary for alleged campaign finance violations.
The term “ghost candidate” is generally used to refer to a “spoiler” candidate that is designed to siphon off votes from the opponent of someone’s preferred candidate. In this case, NextEra Energy Inc. is accused of committing campaign finance violations by trying to prop up their preferred candidate by targeting their opponents’ supporters with all-but-fake “ghost” candidates.
Shareholders Suing Company and Top Executives for Damages
Based on the allegations raised, a group of shareholders are suing NextEra Energy Inc. and some of its top cooperative executives. The shareholders contend that the campaign finance violations resulted in both direct and indirect damages. Indeed, claimants in the shareholder case contend that the improper conduct not only tarnished the company’s reputation, but contributed to a dip in the stock price. Notably, the lawsuit is a shareholder derivative claim.
What is a Shareholder Derivative Claim?
A shareholder derivative claim is a type of lawsuit that is filed by a shareholder on behalf of a corporation against a third party—most often against the company’s executives and/or directors. In a shareholder derivative case, the shareholders typically argue that the company has suffered harm due to mismanagement, fraud, or breach of fiduciary duty by those in control of the corporation. It seeks to hold the responsible parties accountable for the damages. There are strict procedural requirements for shareholder derivative lawsuits in Florida.
Get Help From Our South Florida Shareholder Litigation Attorney Today
At Pike & Lustig, LLP, we provide solutions-focused legal representation in shareholder disputes. Have questions about your options? Contact us today for a confidential consultation. It is our mission to help clients find the best path forward—no matter their circumstances. With offices in Miami and West Palm Beach, our attorneys handle shareholder cases throughout South Florida.