Several recent decisions of the Delaware Court of Chancery—and the state Supreme Court’s response to them—have signaled that for corporate defendants, the threat of having the entire fairness standard applied doesn’t mean all hope is lost when defending a transaction challenged by shareholders.

In a little less than 18 months, two Chancery cases have followed a similar path: entire fairness applied in a case where a party had connections to companies on both sides of a deal. The case survived the motion to dismiss stage and went to trial. The court found that neither the conflicted party’s involvement in the negotiation process nor the price the acquiring corporation ultimately agreed to pay made for a deal unfair enough to overturn. And as of this summer, the Supreme Court agreed.

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