Cases

The attorneys at Eckland & Blando handle numerous high-profile cases across the country. Both at the trial and appellate level, and all the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court, we fight hard against the Government to enforce our clients' rights.

Cases: The U.S. Supreme Court held, in a 9-0 decision, that when the Government enters into business deals with the private sector, it must play by the same rules that apply to its citizens. Franconia Associates v. United States, 536 U.S. 129 (2002). At the ensuing trial, the Government was ordered to pay the plaintiffs over $13 million in damages. See id., 61 Fed. Cl. 718 (2004). The case was argued before the U.S. Supreme Court by government contracts attorney Jeff Eckland.  Subsequent settlement with similar claims across the country have led to additional recoveries that currently total $202 million.

Significant matters in which our attorneys have acted as lead counsel include the following published decisions. Additional cases are listed in each attorney's Full C.V. on the Lawyer Profiles pages.

Breach of Contract

Franconia Associates v. United States, United States Supreme Court, Washington, D.C.; 536 U.S. 129 (2002). Unanimous decision (9-0) allowing breach of contract and Fifth Amendment takings claims brought by government contractor affordable housing owners against the federal government to go forward. On Remand, 61 Fed. Cl. 718 (2004), awarding over $13 million in damages to plaintiffs.

UFE Inc. v. Methode Electronics, Inc., U.S. District Court (Doty), Civ. No. 4-90-103, Minneapolis, Minnesota (1992). Jury special verdict finding damages of $436,000 in breach of contract action involving airbag production for Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler automobiles.

Eckland & Blando successfully defended two individual employees and their private company-employer (and follow-on government contractor) against various state law claims including breach of contract and covenants not to compete on the grounds that the plaintiff’s own predecessor government contract precluded said claims against the defendants. Click here to read the Trial Court's decision. This decision was reversed by a 2-1 decision of the Minnesota Court of Appeals and the case settled following further proceedings in the District Court. Click here to read the decision of the Minnesota Court of Appeals.

Takings Claims

Chancellor Manor v. United States, Federal Circuit Court of Appeals, Washington, D.C.; 331 F.3d 891 (Fed. Cir. 2003). Rejecting Government's attempts to avoid liability for Fifth Amendment takings of properties owned by government contractor affordable housing owners. On Remand, 67 Fed. Cl. 434 (2005), awarding over $15 million in damages to plaintiffs.

U.S. Constitution

United Power Association v. FEMA, U.S. District Court (Webb), Case No. A2-99-180, Fargo, North Dakota; 2001 U.S. District LEXIS 12922 (D.N.D. 2001). Denying Government's motion to dismiss and allowing advisory jury trial of damages claim against FEMA for denial of equal protection in violation of the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

Technical Ordnance, Inc. v. Moore, Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals, St. Paul, Minnesota; 214 F.3d 641 (2001). Reversal of trial court's finding that genuine issues of material fact precluded summary judgment on claims under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) in favor of defendants, including a federal agent in a Bivens action for wrongful prosecution in violation of the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

Uniform Commercial Code (UCC)

Allstate Financial Corporation v. United States, U.S. District Court (Renner), Civil Action No. 4-93-959, St. Paul, Minnesota (1995), aff'd, 109 F.3d 1331 (8th Cir. 1997). Affirming final judgment plus interest in the amount of $1.5 million for wrongful IRS seizure of government contract proceeds.

Contract Terminations (TD/TC)

Appeal of Technical Ordnance, Inc., ASBCA No. 38142, 93-3 BCA ¶ 26,089. Conversion of default termination (T/D) to termination for convenience (T/C) of a MK Stabilizer contract for Navy torpedoes.

Equitable Adjustments

Appeals of TMI Coatings, Inc., ASBCA Nos. 46682, 46871, 94-2 BCA ¶ 26,954. Award for latent defects in jet fuel tanks at the U.S. Naval Air Station, Bermuda.

Appeals of McNally Industries, Inc., ASBCA Nos. 43027, 44688, 93-3 BCA ¶ 26,130. Award for Army machine gun defective technical data package.

Federal Bid Protests

In re Control Corporation, B-253410.3, July 5, 1995, 95-2 CPD ¶ 127. Protest of contract award to Control Data Systems, Inc. for the maintenance of computers at the Naval Air Warfare Center (NAWC) at Point Mugu, California.

In re Multi-Bloc, Inc., B-259182.2, April 20, 1995, 95-1 CPD ¶ 217. Award of fees and costs in protest of contract award for a firing range at the Grand Forks Air Force Base, North Dakota.

State/Local Bid Protests

In re Baxter-Travenol. Protest by national medical products company of a $1 million contract awarded by the Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC) to Baxter-Travenol, based upon alleged violations of Minnesota's Uniform Municipal Contracting Law, resulting in resolicitation of contract.

Defective Pricing

Appeals of Alliant Techsystems, Inc., ASBCA Nos. 47626, 51280, 00-2 BCA ¶ 31,042. Finding Alliant Techsystems not liable for defective pricing of a "Black Ops" contract for a Persian Gulf War weapons system under the Truth in Negotiations Act (TINA), thereby avoiding $1.5 million in excess costs and interest.

Patent Rights

Gronholz v. Sears, Roebuck and Co., U.S. District Court (Davis), Civil Action No. 3-94-1239, St. Paul, Minnesota (1996). Special jury verdict finding no infringement and awarding $0 in damages in patent infringement action involving a Craftsman power tool, where plaintiff sought $3.2 million in damages.

Jurgens v. CBK, Ltd., U.S. District Court (Todd), Civ. No. 89-1140, Jackson, Tennessee (1994), aff'd, 80 F.3d 1566 (Fed. Cir. 1996). Remanding favorable of damages and willful patent infringement and for proper application of damage multiplier. On Remand, case settled for $1.3 million.

Environmental Law

Territorial Court of the U.S. Virgin Islands v. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 54 Fed. Appx. 339; 2002 U.S. App. LEXIS 23392 (3d Cir. 2002).

Pine Bluff for Safe Disposal, et al. v. Arkansas Pollution Control and Ecology Commission, et. al., 354 Ark. 536, 127 S.W. 2d 509 (2003).

Construction Law

Eastover Ridge, LLC v. Metric Constructors, Inc., 533 S.E.2d 827 (N.C. App. 2000). Affirming dismissal of claims brought by owner of apartment complex against general contractor.

Appeal of Thomas & Sons Builders, Inc., ASBCA No. 43527. 95-1 BCA ¶ 27,336 and 96-1 BCA ¶ 28,101.