United States District Court, D. Hawaii
ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT'S MOTION FOR
A. Otake, United States District Judge.
the Court is Fujifilm Medical Systems U.S.A., Inc.'s
(“Fujifilm”) Motion for Reconsideration, ECF No.
71, filed May 30, 2019. Breast Care Center of Hawai‘i
LLC (“BCCH”) timely opposed the Motion, ECF No.
72, and Fujifilm filed its reply, ECF No. 73, on June 27,
2019. The Court decides this matter without a hearing
pursuant to Local Rule 7.2(e). For the reasons set forth
below, the Court DENIES the Motion.
16, 2019, the Court issued its Order Granting in Part and
Denying in Part Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment
(the “Order”). ECF No. 70. In the Order, the
Court granted Fujifilm's Motion for Summary Judgment on
all of BCCH's claims but denied summary judgment on
Fujifilm's breach of contract counterclaim. Id.
Fujifilm's counterclaim sought payment of the annual
service fees as part of what the Order referred to as the
“Service Agreement.” ECF No. 9-1. The Order held
that a genuine dispute of fact existed “over whether
Fujifilm breached the agreement by failing to properly
perform its service obligations, ” Order at 30, and
therefore denied Fujifilm's Motion for Summary Judgment
on its counterclaim. Id. at 31.
Motion for Reconsideration under Federal Rule of Civil
Procedure 59(e) argues that because the Order determined that
“BCCH committed the first material breach, ”
Fujifilm's failure to perform service obligations after
BCCH's material breach cannot excuse BCCH's breach.
Id. at 2. Thus, Fujifilm argues that BCCH must pay
the annual service fees regardless of whether Fujifilm
performed its service obligations after the annual fees were
due. Id. at 5.
Rule of Civil Procedure 59(e) allows parties to file a motion
to alter or amend judgment within 28 days after the entry of
judgment and permits the court to reconsider and amend a
previous order. Fed.R.Civ.P. 59(e). Rule 59(e) provides
“an extraordinary remedy, to be used sparingly in the
interests of finality and conservation of judicial
resources.” Carroll v. Nakatani, 342 F.3d 934,
945 (9th Cir. 2003). Motions for reconsideration must first
“demonstrate some reason why the court should
reconsider its prior decision” and second must
“set forth facts or law of a strongly convincing nature
to induce the court to reverse its prior decision.”
Na Mamo O‘Aha‘Ino v. Galiher, 60
F.Supp.2d 1058, 1059 (D. Haw. 1999). The Ninth Circuit has
identified four grounds justifying reconsideration under Rule
In general, there are four basic grounds upon which a Rule
59(e) motion may be granted: (1) if such motion is necessary
to correct manifest errors of law or fact upon which the
judgment rests; (2) if such motion is necessary to present
newly discovered or previously unavailable evidence; (3) if
such motion is necessary to prevent manifest injustice; or
(4) if the amendment is justified by an intervening change in
Allstate Ins. Co. v. Herron, 634 F.3d 1101, 1111
(9th Cir. 2011).
Fujifilm argues the Court committed a manifest error of law.
But Fujifilm cites to authority consistent with the
Order's statement that a party “must establish that
it performed its own obligations” to prevail on a
breach of contract claim. Order at 31; ECF No. 71-1 at 4. And
Fujifilm agrees that “a material breach by one party
excuses the other party from further performance under the
contract.” ECF No. 71-1 (citing Bischoff v.
Cook, 118 Haw. 154, 164 (Haw. App. 2008)); see also
Evergreen Eng'g Inc. v. Green Energy Team LLC, 884
F.Supp.2d 1049, 1059 (D. Haw. 2012); PR Pension Fund v.
Nakada, 8 Haw.App. 480, 491-93 (1991). There is thus no
dispute over the controlling law. Rather, Fujifilm disputes
the Order's application of the law to the facts in this
characterizes the Order as a “determination that BCCH
committed the first material breach under the contract,
” id. at 2, and argues that the Court should
have therefore concluded that Fujifilm's contractual
obligations were excused, entitling Fujifilm to summary
judgment on its breach of contract claim against BCCH
regardless of whether Fujifilm performed. ECF No. 71-1 at 5.
Specifically, Fujifilm states that “BCCH's failure
and refusal to pay any of the annual fees under the
[Service Agreement], which were due in advance of
service, was a material antecedent breach that excused
[Fujifilm's] own obligations under the contract.”
ECF No. 71-1 at 5.
to Fujifilm's assertion, the Order did not determine that
BCCH committed the first material breach. See Order
at 19 n.5, 30-31. The Order expressly found triable issues of
fact about whether Fujifilm performed its “service
obligations, ” which were required of Fujifilm
before the Service Agreement took effect, and
before any service fees were due from BCCH. Id.
Compare ECF No. 43-11 at 11 (“[Fujifilm] shall
provide [Maintenance Services] for a term of one year from
the original date of Installation of the System.”)
with ECF No. 43-1 at 20 (“[S]ervice fees under
the [Service Agreement] were . . . payable starting in May
2014”). Under the contract, Fujifilm was required to
service, repair, or replace the equipment during the warranty
period. ECF No. 43-1 at 15-16, 19-20; ECF No. 43-11 at 11.
BCCH presented evidence that Fujifilm breached its service
obligations during the warranty period. See
Order at 30-31; ECF No. 63 ¶¶ 3-7; ECF No. 62-1
¶¶ 4, 6, 7, 10, 11, 13. After the warranty period,
the annual service fees were to extend Fujifilm's service
obligations for an additional four years beginning in May
2014. See Order at 2; ECF No. 43-11 at 11; ECF No.
43-1 at 15-16, 19-20.
Order did not determine that BCCH committed the first
material breach. Because triable issues of fact exist about
whether Fujifilm performed its service obligations under the
contract, specifically during the warranty period prior to
BCCH's non-payment of the annual service fees, BCCH
maintains a defense to Fujifilm's breach of contract
claim and Summary Judgment was properly denied.Order at 19 n.5,