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Babcock & Wilcox Co. v. Hitachi America, Ltd.

United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio
406 F. Supp. 2d 819 (2005)


Facts

The Babcock & Wilcox Company (B&W) (plaintiff) contracted with Hitachi America, Ltd. (Hitachi) (defendant) for the design and manufacturing of an emissions-reduction system for B&W’s coal-fired electrical power plant. This system was known as the Selective Catalytic Reduction System (SCR system). B&W and Hitachi had begun negotiating in June 1999, when B&W sent Hitachi a request for a quotation for the SCR system. Several proposals were exchanged through December 1999. On December 9, 1999, Hitachi sent B&W a detailed proposal that included specific terms, such as price and warranties. B&W and Hitachi continued to negotiate several terms, including price. These terms were settled in June 2000, and B&W issued a purchase order to Hitachi on June 15, 2000. The purchase order stated that it was an offer rather than an acceptance and contained additional warranties that were more extensive than the warranties contained in the December 1999 proposal. Hitachi delivered the SCR system, but B&W experienced issues with the equipment. Hitachi did not correct the issues, and B&W sued Hitachi for breach of contract. B&W and Hitachi disputed whether the June 2000 purchase order was an acceptance of the December 1999 proposal or an offer. B&W and Hitachi both moved for summary judgment on the issue of the terms of the contract.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Gwin, J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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