Vendor Reinstatement

Thanks in large part to Verrill Dana attorneys, a North Carolina Arbitration Panel recently ordered Scott Health & Safety (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tyco International, Ltd.) to reinstate Fire Tech & Safety of New England, Inc. (with offices in Winthrop, ME, Chelmsford, MA, and Springfield, MA) as a Scott distributor. Scott is a leading worldwide manufacturer of self-contained breathing apparatus used by firefighters as well as other fire safety equipment. Fire Tech has sold Scott products in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont for the past 26 years. The Panel ruled that Fire Tech fell within the protections of Maine dealer law for power equipment and that Scott’s termination of Fire Tech on March 31, 2009 violated Maine law. Previously, in June 2009, the Maine Superior Court ordered that Scott continue to keep Fire Tech as a distributor pending a final hearing. There was an arbitration hearing held April 11-15, 2011 in Charlotte, North Carolina.

In its May 25 order, the Panel found that Fire Tech had “provided Scott with excellent sales and service representation” over the years. The Panel then ordered that Scott reinstate Fire Tech as a Scott distributor and reimburse Fire Tech for fees and costs incurred in the two-year case.

This case involved the dealership laws and antitrust laws of the States of Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Vermont, including interpreting the scope of the state franchise laws