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Miami-Dade County Expressway Authority v. Electronic Transaction Consultants Corp.

Florida Court of Appeals, Third District

January 2, 2020

Miami-Dade County Expressway Authority, Appellant,
v.
Electronic Transaction Consultants Corporation, Appellee.

         Not final until disposition of timely filed motion for rehearing.

          Appeals from the Circuit Court for Miami-Dade County Lower Tribunal No. 12-46272, William Thomas, Judge.

          Holland & Knight LLP, and Rodolfo Sorondo, Jr., Christopher Bellows, Monica Castro, and Tiffany Roddenberry, for appellant.

          Vezina, Lawrence & Piscitelli, P.A., and Mike Piscitelli, Bradley S. Copenhaver and Christian L. Cutillo (Fort Lauderdale); Akerman LLP, and Gerald B. Cope, Jr., and Lorayne Perez, for appellee.

          Before FERNANDEZ, MILLER and GORDO, JJ.

          GORDO, J.

         In this consolidated appeal, Miami-Dade County Expressway Authority ("MDX") appeals the trial court's final judgments awarding damages and attorneys' fees and costs to Electronic Transaction Consultants Corporation ("ETC") following a non-jury trial. We affirm the trial court's final judgments in all respects except as to the award of prejudgment interest, which we reverse and remand for calculation from a fixed date of loss.

         FACTUAL & PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         MDX and ETC entered into the Account Management and Toll Enforcement Systems ("AMTES") contract in 2009 for the design and operation of an electronic toll collection and enforcement system, locally known as Toll-by-Plate. The AMTES contract incorporated a schedule for the design and development of the system and milestone provisions for the implementation of the system.

         In 2012, ETC sued MDX for breach of the AMTES contract seeking four types of damages owed under the contract: system, operations, maintenance and disentanglement damages. MDX then terminated the contract and ETC added a cause for wrongful termination.

         Following a non-jury trial, the court found that: 1) MDX materially breached the AMTES contract by failing to follow the schedule and failing to comply with deadlines and requirements for submittal reviews and approvals; and 2) MDX wrongfully terminated the contract because, at the time of termination, the system ETC delivered was in material compliance and ETC was substantially performing its contractual obligations.

         After briefing on prejudgment interest, the trial court issued its final judgment awarding ETC $43, 000, 000 plus prejudgment interest and interest for a total of $53, 298, 717.27 in damages. The trial court subsequently entered final judgment as to attorneys' fees and costs awarding ETC $8, 000, 000 with interest.

         MDX appeals the final judgment in favor of ETC and the award of attorneys' fees, asserting it is entitled to judgment as a matter of law because ETC failed to comply with the dispute resolution procedures set forth in the AMTES contract.

         STANDARD ...


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