V.A.L. Floors v. Westminster Communities

810 A.2d 625 (2002)

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V.A.L. Floors v. Westminster Communities

New Jersey Superior Court, Appellate Division
810 A.2d 625 (2002)

RW

Facts

In 1997, V.A.L. Floors, Inc. (VAL) (plaintiff) contracted with Westminster Communities, Inc. (Westminster) (defendant) to provide flooring for Westminster’s planned 55-unit residential community. Construction was slated to begin in 2000. Orders for the first 19 units showed a strong demand for flooring upgrades, which carried higher profit margins than base-grade flooring. In 1998, Westminster breached the contract. VAL sued and included lost profits in its claim for damages. VAL estimated those profits based on the strong early interest in flooring upgrades and on the 1998 costs of labor and material. Westminster moved for summary judgment on the grounds that VAL’s damages were too speculative. The trial court agreed and awarded judgment for Westminster, noting that VAL had no control over market forces on labor and material costs and consumer demand for flooring upgrades, all of which easily could change between 1998 and 2000. VAL appealed to the New Jersey Superior Court’s Appellate Division.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Weissbard, J.)

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