Delaware gets Hancock lawsuit

OXFORD – Hancock Fabrics’ lawsuit against its former accountants, PricewaterhouseCoopers, will move to Delaware, U.S. District Chief Judge Michael P. Mills ruled this week.
Months ago, PwC asked for the transfer, saying the issues Hancock raised against it belonged with the same court over Hancock’s bankruptcy.
Hancock, which has its corporate offices in Baldwyn, argued it would be more convenient to leave the case in Mississippi, among other reasons to keep it here.
“The court finds the need for the original bankruptcy court to decide matters related to that filing outweighs the factors suggesting this matter should remain in Mississippi,” Mills wrote is his ruling issued Thursday.
Hancock filed for Chapter 11 protection in Delaware Bankruptcy Court in March 2007. The filing listed PwC as an unsecured creditor.
The company exited bankruptcy protection in August 2008.
In March 2009, Hancock sued PwC in the circuit court of Lee County, alleging its former accountants’ decisions contributed to its financial woes. PwC moved the lawsuit to federal court then asked for the Delaware transfer.
While Hancock also asked the federal court to send the case back to Lee County, Mills said the Delaware court will decide that issue.
Hancock and PwC are incorporated in Delaware.
“There is no doubt the Delaware Bankruptcy court can handle both the bankruptcy issues and the torts issues in this case,” the judge wrote.

NEMS Daily Journal