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Foley Hoag Secures Victory for Client RhineTec GmbH

August 02, 2016

Foley Hoag LLP recently secured a victory on behalf of client Rhine-Tec GmbH (Rhine-Tec), following a jury trial on a breach of contract claim in Middlesex County Superior Court. 

Rhine-Tec, a German manufacturer and seller of microscopes used by ophthalmologists, signed a contract in 2008 to sell substantially all of its assets related to two products to Hightech American Industrial Laboratories, Inc. (HAI), a Massachusetts-based manufacturer of ophthalmic equipment.

As part of the agreement, Rhine-Tec was required to transfer the assets to HAI within a five-month transition period. After HAI asserted that Rhine-Tec failed to transfer all of the assets and stopped making payments, the parties signed a series of amendments and agreed to a price reduction. Rhine-Tec completed all tasks in accordance with the amendments, but HAI refused to pay the balance of the contract price. HAI once again claimed that Rhine-Tec failed to complete the asset transfer.

In 2014, HAI sued Rhine-Tec for breach of contract and sought damages for its alleged manufacturing and parts costs, as well as lost profits. Rhine-Tec counterclaimed for HAI’s failure to pay the full contract price and sought multiple damages and attorneys’ fees under Massachusetts General Law Chapter 93A (c.93A).

After a four-day trial, a jury returned a verdict in favor of Rhine-Tec, finding that Rhine-Tec did not breach the parties’ agreement. The jury also found in favor of Rhine-Tec on its counterclaim, concluding that HAI had breached the agreement and was liable to Rhine-Tec for the full balance of the contract price.  Rhine-Tec’s c.93A claim is still outstanding.

Foley Hoag attorneys Neil Austin and Michael Licker represented Rhine-Tec in the matter, with assistance from paralegal Judy Gallant.