The Iowa Court of Appeals reversed a $1.4 million award against a minority shareholder of a family-owned construction company, determining the jury was given improper instructions as to the defendant’s fiduciary duty.

In a March 8 opinion, defendants Joseph J. Manatt and Tanam Real Estate (collectively referred to in the opinion as “Joe”) appealed from the general verdict finding him liable to his family’s company and former place of employment, Manatt’s Inc., objecting to one of the jury’s instructions, specifically the inclusion of the term “shareholder.” The Court of Appeals agreed with Joe, reversing and remanding for a new trial.