Articles Posted in Commercial Law

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Plaintiff, a seller seeking damages from a buyer that breached contracts to purchase goods, argued at trial that it was entitled to recover its market price damages. The trial court determined that plaintiff was entitled to the lesser of its market price damages or its resale price damages, and the court ultimately awarded plaintiff its resale price damages. The Court of Appeals reversed and remanded, because the it determined that plaintiff could recover its market price damages, even though it had resold some of the goods at issue. Upon review of the matter, the Supreme Court agreed that plaintiff was entitled to recover its market price damages, even if those damages exceeded plaintiff's resale price damages. View "Peace River Seed Co-Op v. Proseeds Marketing" on Justia Law

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Defendant CTE Tech Corp. is a Taiwanese corporation that manufactures battery chargers. Defendant Invacare Corporation is an Ohio corporation that manufactures motorized wheelchairs. CTE agreed to supply Invacare with battery chargers built to Invacare's specifications, which Invacare then sold with its motorized wheelchairs in Oregon and the rest of the United States. Plaintiffs brought this action against CTE after their mother died in a fire allegedly caused by a defect in CTE's battery charger. CTE moved to dismiss plaintiffs' claims against it on the ground that Oregon lacks personal jurisdiction over it. CTE reasoned that due process would permit an Oregon court to exercise personal jurisdiction over it only if CTE had purposefully availed itself of the privilege of doing business here. In CTE's view, the fact that it sold its battery chargers to Invacare in Ohio, which sold them together with its wheelchairs in Oregon, was not sufficient to meet that standard. The trial court denied CTE's motion, and the Supreme Court denied CTE's petition for a writ of mandamus to direct the trial court to vacate its ruling. CTE then filed a petition for certiorari with the United States Supreme Court. After the Court issued its decision in "J. McIntyre Machinery, Ltd. v. Nicastro," (131 S Ct 2780 (2011)), the Court granted CTE's petition for certiorari, vacated our order, and remanded the case to the Oregon Court for further consideration. On remand, the Oregon Court issued an alternative writ of mandamus to the trial court directing it to vacate its order denying CTE's motion to dismiss or show cause for not doing so. The trial court declined to vacate its order, and the parties briefed the question whether, in light of Nicastro, Oregon courts may exercise personal jurisdiction over CTE. Upon review, the Oregon Supreme Court held that they may and accordingly dismissed the alternative writ. View "Willemsen v. Invacare Corporation" on Justia Law

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Plaintiffs Greenwood Products, Inc. and Jewett-Cameron Lumber Corp. obtained a jury verdict in their favor on a breach of contract claim against Defendants Forest Products, Dovenberg, and LeFors. They appealed the Court of Appeals' decision that reversed the judgment entered on that verdict. The contract in question required Defendants to sell, and Plaintiffs to buy all of Defendants' inventory, for a certain percentage over Defendants' cost for that inventory. Plaintiffs alleged that Defendants had breached the contract by erroneously accounting for their cost of inventory, causing Plaintiffs to pay $820,000 more for the inventory than they should have. Defendants moved for a directed verdict on the breach of contract claim, but the trial court denied the motion and sent the claim to the jury, which returned a verdict for Plaintiffs. The Court of Appeals held that the trial court should have granted defendants' motion for a directed verdict because the contract did not impose any obligation on defendants to accurately account for the cost of the inventory. Upon review, the Supreme Court concluded that the trial court in this case properly rejected each of the grounds that Defendants' raised at trial for granting their motion for a directed verdict. The Court also concluded that the additional argument that the Court of Appeals relied on in reversing the trial court was not preserved, and therefore reversed the appellate court's decision overturning the trial court. View "Greenwood Products v. Greenwood Forest Products" on Justia Law