Chargers ownership dispute might push NFL to get involved, lawyer contends

The Los Angeles Chargers line up during the NFL football team's organized team activities.
Chargers gamers participate in arranged group activities at the group’s practice center in Costa Mesa on Tuesday. Will the NFL attempt to deal with the Chargers’ ownership concerns? (Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press)

2 months after a sibling of Chargers managing owner Dean Spanos submitted a court petition to attempt to require the sale of the group, a conflict has actually emerged over whether the matter ought to be fixed by the NFL or through the judicial system.

In an ex parte petition submitted Thursday, the lawyer for Dea Spanos Berberian asked Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Jonathan Rosenbloom to provide an order validating the court’s jurisdiction.

The lawyer, Adam Streisand, composed in the petition that “relief is urgently needed” due to the fact that the NFL informed Berberian and Spanos that Commissioner Roger Goodell has “exclusive arbitral jurisdiction” and the league would choose “whether this court or the NFL has jurisdiction.”

“This is not an internal dispute about the football team; it is an internal decision about the Trust,” the court filing stated.

An NFL spokesperson decreased to discuss the league’s participation in the disagreement.

The April petition by Berberian, who acts as co-trustee of the household trust along with her bro, declared the trust’s financial obligations and expenditures surpass $353 million with little wish for the scenario to be reversed. The trust owns 36% of the Chargers, while Berberian, Spanos and their 2 brother or sisters each control 15% of the franchise.

The petition desires the court to buy Berberian and Spanos to offer the trust’s interest in the Chargers and work out an arrangement of the trust that would force the group’s other investors to do the exact same.

Dean Spanos and his 2 other brother or sisters have actually intensely opposed their sibling’s effort, calling it a “misguided personal agenda” in a previous declaration.

NFL executive Jeff Pash sent out a letter to the celebrations Might 4 stating “it appears that the dispute must be resolved through the internal dispute resolution mechanism established by the NFL Constitution and Bylaws” due to the fact that the dispute is in between 2 owners and the relief Berberian looks for would affect ownership of the group.

Pash’s letter, connected to Thursday’s court filing, advised the celebrations not to discuss the lawsuits or the “underlying dispute” or “take any action that would involve further litigation.”

Chargers owner Dean Spanos watches the team warm up before a game against the Detroit Lions.

Chargers managing owner Dean Spanos enjoys the group heat up prior to a video game versus the Detroit Lions in September 2019. (Duane Burleson / Associated Press)

2 weeks later on, Joseph Shenker, a lawyer for Spanos, sent out a short letter to the league concurring that the disagreement ought to be fixed by Goodell.

In a 23-page letter sent out to the NFL the exact same day, Streisand raised various objections.

“Frankly, it is surprising that the League would seek to insinuate itself in this matter, or that it would believe it has the competence to make determinations about how these Co-Trustees must exercise their fiduciary duties under the California Probate Code,” Streisand composed.

Shenker reacted to Streisand’s letter in follow-up note to the league recently on behalf of Spanos.

“Dea’s submission misconstrues both the scope of the dispute she seeks to have resolved and the different ownership positions of the parties to it, and ignores her express agreement to adhere to the NFL Constitution, including its arbitration provisions,” Shenker composed.

In the letter, Shenker disagreed with Berberian’s allegations in the preliminary petition about the trust’s monetary position, composing that it has a “conservative net worth in excess of $117 million” and the scenario is “anything but dire.” He declared the Berberian “has taken steps to go against the will of her parents and her other three siblings.”

In the middle of the backward and forward, Spanos’ lawyers submitted a movement to alter the location from Los Angeles to San Joaquin County due to the fact that the trust is administered from Stockton. That movement implicated Berberian’s legal group of submitting the preliminary petition in L.A. as part of a “transparent, but improper, ploy to maximize publicity.”

However Thursday’s ex parte filing — which stated the trust is “drowning under debt” — establishes another face-off in a conflict with extensive ramifications.

“The NFL is expected to make its ‘decision’ about this Court’s jurisdiction imminently,” the filing stated. “Dea believes, sadly, that the NFL’s ‘decision’ is a foregone conclusion …”

This story initially appeared in Los Angeles Times.

Jobber Wiki author Frank Long contributed to this report.