Connecticut Business Lawsuit Roundup

As a new addition in 2011, I am going to regularly feature new business lawsuits along with the usual trial and appellate decisions of interest in Connecticut.  Here's the first installment:

Appellate Court:

Cianci v. Original Werks, LLC 

Appellate Court finds that $150,000 mechanic's lien was timely filed despite claim that it was made after statutory limit of 90 days from date "services" were performed. The decision includes a discussion of the legislative history of the mechanic's lien statute and the definition of "services" under the statute. The court determined that services includes work done in or utilized in the building to be constructed, raised, removed, or reparied or the improvement of any lot or subdivision. In this case, the court construed the mechanic's lien statute liberally and found that that contractor returning to the property at the request of the homeowner to investigate alleged deficiencies constituted lienable services.

Walpole Woodworkers, Inc.  v. Manning

Appellate Court finds that homeowner who raised the Home Improvement Act's technical requirements of start and finish date in bad faith.  The Home Improvement Act in Connecticut requires registered contractors to include the following in written agreements:

  •  signatures of owner and contractor
  • name and address of contractor
  • cancellation rights
  • start date and completion date

Failure to include these requirements can result in technical defenses to enforcement of a  home improvement contract.  However, a homeowner cannot successfully raise these defenses in bad faith.  In this case, the homeowner had no real dispute with the work but refused to pay.  The Appellate Court upheld a finding of bad faith when the homeowner tried to raise the lack of start date and completion date in the contract.

Read here for one of my old posts on Connecticut's Home Improvement Act requirements and defenses.

New Lawsuits:

Environmental Energy Services, Inc v. Cylenchar Limited, et al.  United States District Court.

Plaintiff Environmental is a Connecticut corporation and claims that Defendants (both from England) made misrepresentations which induced plaintiff to perform services. Plaintiff claims breach of a partnership agreement, unjust enrichment, fraud, and violation of Connecticut’s Unfair Trade Practices Act. Plaintiff alleges that it was in a joint venture business with Defendants to market a technology that removes mercury from exhaust gasses in coal fired utilities. Pursuant to the joint venture, Defendants were to provide a significant cash investment, provide technical assistance, and a license. Plaintiff was to market the technology. Plaintiff alleges that it spent significant sums marketing the technology and gaining a trial customer for the new technology at which time the Defendants issued a cease and desist to Plaintiffs and refused to continue with the joint venture.


Tellar v. Webber, et al.  State Judicial District of Hartford.

Plaintiff and Defendant were equal owners of a limited liability company (LLC) engaged in the relish making business.  Plaintiff alleges that Defendant, his co-owner, dissolved the LLC without consent and started another relish business.  Plaintiff alleges the Defendant did so without sharing profits or including Plaintiff.  Plaintiff brought suit as an individual and derivatively on behalf of the the LLC against his co-owner in the LLC and the co-owner's new business.  The Plaintiff claimed breach of contract to share profits, breach of good faith and fair dealing, breach of fiduciary duty, conversion, civil theft, unfair trade practices, and usurping a corporate opportunity.

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Peter Hurley - January 10, 2013 1:09 PM

Cylenchar Limited is pleased to announce the conclusion of its dispute with Environmental Energy Services, Inc. (EES) of Sandy Hook, Connecticut at the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA), (Cylenchar, LTD v. Environmental Energy Services, Inc., Arbitration No. 11203).

Following the breakdown and termination of relations between the parties in May 2010, a dispute arose culminating in the filing of a lawsuit by EES in the United States District Court for the District of Connecticut in January, 2011 entitled Environmental Energy Services, Inc. v Cylenchar Limited and Dr. Peter J. Hurley, Case No. 3:11-cv-00039-JCH, wherein EES alleged breach of contract, unjust enrichment, and negligent or fraudulent misrepresentations, including an alleged breach of the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act (CUTPA). Cylenchar stopped that lawsuit by moving successfully for compulsion of arbitration which it commenced against EES in the London Court of International Arbitration in December, 2011.

In respect of EES' allegations the LCIA arbiter found no evidence of negligent or fraudulent misrepresentation and in relation to the alleged breach of CUTPA, in his award issued on 1 November 2012 the arbiter noted: "I see no unfair methods of competition nor do I see deceptive acts or practices". The award in which all EES' claims were denied and Cylenchar Limited was granted its costs in respect of the Connecticut lawsuit has now been confirmed by the Connecticut Superior Court, and EES has paid Cylenchar the damages awarded in the arbitration (, Case No. DBD-CV-12-6010993-S).

Cylenchar retains the sole right to exploit its patented CyCurex® technology for the remediation of mercury and other heavy metals from contaminated gases, within both power utility and cement industry sectors, and the surviving obligations of the parties under their Mutual Confidentiality Agreement and Memorandum of Understanding remain in force.

Cylenchar Limited

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