The Plaintiff’s allegation that Pure Planet was bound by a settlement agreement negotiated by prior defendant proved to be a bridge too far.
Dallas, TX (PRWEB) July 15, 2015
Fairview-based pool chemical company Pure Planet Science and Technologies, Inc., dba Orenda Technologies, was recently granted summary judgment in a breach of contract dispute with Natural Chemistry. Pure Planet then agreed to a settlement of its remaining counterclaim.
The dispute originated in 2013, when Natural Chemistry filed a lawsuit against Pure Planet Science and Technologies, Inc. in the Middle District of Florida claiming patent infringement, breach of contract, disparagement and conspiracy. The case stemmed from a previously settled lawsuit (Case No. 6:09-cv-743-Orl-31GJK, U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida) in which Natural Chemistry had made similar patent-infringement claims against a small Arizona pool chemical supplier. After that case was settled, Pure Planet purchased the assets of the Arizona supplier including the rights to the trade name (Orenda Technologies).
Three years later, Natural Chemistry filed the same claim against Pure Planet. Natural Chemistry claimed that when Pure Planet bought the assets of Orenda Technologies, Inc. it became bound by the settlement agreement with Orenda Technologies, Inc.
In response to the Plaintiff’s claims, Pure Planet filed counterclaims in the lawsuit, under the same case number. The counterclaims filed against Natural Chemistry on July 22, 2014 alleged that it falsely labeled its products “Made in the U.S.A.” and as being covered by various expired or otherwise inapplicable patents. After these counterclaims were filed, Natural Chemistry voluntarily made responsive changes to its product labels.
“The Plaintiff’s allegation that Pure Planet was bound by a settlement agreement negotiated by prior defendant proved to be a bridge too far,” explains John Fischer, Pure Planet’s lead counsel.
In issuing summary judgment, the Court rejected each of Natural Chemistry’s legal theories for binding Pure Planet as a party to the settlement agreement made in the previous lawsuit. In its Order for Summary Judgment, the Court states, “Contrary to Plaintiff’s argument, an asset purchaser does not impliedly assume contractual obligations simply by being aware of the corporation’s prior obligations…Here, the asset purchase agreement expressly disclaims successor liability.”
“We are gratified that the federal court found Natural Chemistry’s case legally insufficient,” says Pure Planet attorney James Pikl.
SOURCE: Orenda Technologies
CAUSE/CASE NO: 6:13-cv-1607-Orl-31KRS
COURT: U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida (Orlando Division)