Farthing v. Coco Beach Resort Management, LLC, No. 17-1157 (1st Cir. 2017)Annotate this Case
The First Circuit vacated the judgment of the district court granting summary judgment for Defendant on Plaintiff’s breach of contract claim. Plaintiff, a South Carolina resident, brought this diversity suit against Defendant, a Puerto Rico company, alleging that Defendant breached his employment agreement by unilaterally terminating it early. Plaintiff sought damages for unpaid base salary and anticipated commissions on real estate sales. The district court found that Plaintiff’s employment was void because Plaintiff was effecting real estate broker duties without a license under Puerto Rico law. The First Circuit remanded the case for further proceedings, holding that summary judgment was inappropriate where it was disputed whether Defendant was aware that Plaintiff did not have a broker’s license at any relevant time and whether some of the work Plaintiff performed and intended to perform was permissible without a broker’s license.