Quimbee logo
DMCA.com Protection Status
From our private database of 19,800+ case briefs...

Waldinger Corp. v. CRS Group Engineers, Inc.

United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
755 F.2d 781 (1985)


CRS Group Engineers, Inc., Clark Dietz Division (Dietz) (defendant) prepared engineering specifications for a waste-treatment facility. Waldinger Corporation (Waldinger) (plaintiff) was the project’s mechanical subcontractor. Waldinger obtained an offer from Ashbrook-Simon-Hartley, Inc. (Ashbrook) (defendant) to provide sludge-dewatering equipment according to Dietz’s engineering specifications. Ashbrook began working with Dietz. Ashbrook discovered that Dietz’s engineering specifications were based on sludge-dewatering equipment exclusively made by Carter, one of Ashbrook’s competitors. As a result, Ashbrook needed to depart from Dietz’s specifications in some ways. It was common industry practice to allow flexibility of this sort to allow different subcontractors to compete for the same project. Additionally, federal regulations required Dietz to interpret the specifications in a procompetitive and non-restrictive manner. Ashbrook demonstrated that, despite some engineering departures, the equipment still met Dietz’s performance requirements. Dietz initially led Ashbrook to believe that Ashbrook’s equipment was workable, but Dietz ultimately rejected Ashbrook’s equipment. As a result of Dietz’s rejection, Ashbrook could not provide the equipment to Waldinger. Waldinger purchased the equipment from Carter instead and sued Ashbrook for breach of contract. Ashbrook raised the defense of impracticability, arguing that Dietz’s specifications were impossible to accommodate. The district court found that Dietz intentionally prepared specifications that were impossible to follow for any company but Carter. The court held that Ashbrook was excused from performance due to impracticability. Waldinger appealed, arguing that Ashbrook was not excused from performance.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Wood, J.)

Concurrence/Dissent (Pell, J.)

What to do next…

  1. Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.

    You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 510,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.

  2. Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.

    Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.

Here's why 510,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:

  • Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 19,800 briefs, keyed to 985 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
  • The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
  • Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
  • Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.

Questions & Answers

Have a question about this case?

Sign up for a free 7-day trial and ask it

Sign up for a FREE 7-day trial