Cases & Deals

CBS affiliate, after moving to dismiss, settles wide-ranging suit over its billboard-leasing practices

Clients CBS Corporation

Jones Day represented CBS Outdoor, Inc., a subsidiary of CBS Corporation, in a suit in the Western District of Missouri that challenged CBS Outdoor's handling of applications to lease locations for billboards along the rights of way of various railroads, for whom the company acted as leasing agent. Five plaintiffs, from five different states, brought the suit, which concerned more than forty locations throughout the country. The plaintiffs alleged fraudulent misrepresentation, fraudulent omission, tortious interference with business expectations, and unfair competition. They also alleged initially that CBS Outdoor had violated the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), but withdrew that claim. In addition to suing CBS Outdoor, the plaintiffs sued three of its employees on various grounds. In the fall of 2009, CBS Outdoor moved to dismiss the entire case for improper venue and, in the alternative, to dismiss several counts for failure to state a claim. The individual defendants also moved to dismiss on various grounds. Soon after briefing was completed on these motions, and based on the strength of the motions, CBS Outdoor requested, and the court granted, a stay of all discovery on any issues. CBS Outdoor reached favorable settlement agreements with all of the plaintiffs, and all claims were dismissed against all defendants with prejudice in June 2010.

Nathan Simmons et al. v. CBS Outdoor, Inc., et al., Civil Case No.06-0863-CV-W-DW (W.D. Mo.)