Exact Software N. Am., Inc. v. Infocon Sys., Inc., No. 12-3538 (6th Cir. 2013)Annotate this Case
Exact developed business software. Infocon began distributing Exact’s software in 1998. A conflict arose when Exact allegedly abandoned a scheduled upgrade, leaving distributors like Infocon out to dry, and Infocon allegedly failed to remit fees. Exact sued Infocon in 2003. According to the district court, Exact showed “persistent noncompliance with… ever more stringent” discovery orders. When Infocon moved for a default judgment, Exact fired its lawyer, hired new counsel and entered settlement negotiations. . On the eve of settlement, Infocon fired its lawyer, DeMoisey. DeMoisey placed a charging lien on the settlement proceeds. Exact delivered the $4 million settlement to the district court, which distributed most of it to Infocon and placed the remaining $1.2 million in escrow pending resolution of the fee dispute. Nine months later, Infocon sued DeMoisey in Kentucky state court for malpractice. After a summary judgment ruling in favor of the lawyer, the district court held a bench trial and awarded DeMoisey $1.4 million in quantum meruit relief. The Sixth Circuit affirmed, rejecting arguments that the amount was too high, that Infocon had a right to a jury trial and, for the first time on appeal, that the district court lacked jurisdiction because DeMoisey and Infocon are both from Kentucky.