Performance Contracting Inc. v. Dynasteel Corp.

Consumers Energy entered into a Purchase Order, under which DynaSteel, operating in Tennessee and Mississippi, would fabricate ductwork for shipment to an Essexville, Michigan power plant for installation by a third party. The PO contained a Michigan choice-of-law provision. Consumers was to pay $10,634,755. PCI, with locations in Kansas and Tennessee, was to supply the insulation requested by Consumers for $1,842,890. The contract between DynaSteel and PCI contained a Tennessee choice-of-law provision. As the project progressed, Consumers paid DynaSteel $2.9 million, but DynaSteel did not pay PCI $1,542,890 it owed. DynaSteel also owed PCI more than $3.2 million for other projects. DynaSteel allegedly comingled Consumer’s payments with funds from other projects. Under a “Payment Plan Proposal,” DynaSteel was to make payments, which would apply to the unpaid orders in chronological order (the Consumers project came last in this order). The PPP did not contain a choice-of-law provision. DynaSteel paid PCI $2.1 million, which satisfied its obligations concerning the other projects, but did not fulfill its obligation as to the Consumers project. PCI sued in Michigan, alleging that DynaSteel violated the Michigan Builders Trust Fund Act. The district court entered summary judgment for Dynasteel, reasoning that the PO between PCI and DynaSteel was controlling, that the Tennessee choice-of-law provision was binding, and that the Trust Fund Act did not apply extraterritorially by its own force. The Sixth Circuit affirmed. View "Performance Contracting Inc. v. Dynasteel Corp." on Justia Law