Termination fee void as penalty

MarauderA contract dispute about the management of several vessels (among them, the M/V Maurader, right) led to a holding that a termination fee was void as a penalty.  The contract required the boat owner to pay the management company “fifty percent of what [it] would have earned as a Management Fee had [the] Agreement not been so terminated,” and provided a formula for making that calculation, which in this case was $537,246.86.  “The termination fee formula, however, makes no deductions to account for the fact that [management company] would have fewer expenses in the event of termination, and [it] has not quantified the expenses that would remain.”   Comar Marine Co. v. Raider Marine Logistics LLC, No. 13-30156 (July 6, 2015).

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