Florida football fans are likely familiar with the NFL Vikings. However, the CEO, vice chairman and president of the team are in the news for reasons other than the success of the football team. The three, who are also brothers, have recently been embroiled in a breach of contract case in which an arbitrator has ordered them to pay $2 million to their business partners — who happen to be their cousins. The parties had previously agreed to a joint venture.
These three Vikings owners are also the owners of a company called Northfield Livingston Developers. In 2000, they reportedly entered into an agreement with their cousins, owners of ExEx, Inc. and Claimants Deerco, Inc. As part of the agreement, the brothers apparently agreed to join in a venture related to a housing project involving building on 40 lots.
However, the brothers reportedly stopped building in 2011 after only 31 of the lots were built in the development, known as Hillside Heights. Construction was reportedly halted due to contention between the two groups, but it is unclear what caused the conflict. An arbitrator recently ruled that the brothers’ decision to discontinue construction was a breach of their joint venture. As a result, the venture is to be dissolved and the brothers are to return the $2 million the cousins originally contributed.
The failure of a company or individuals to follow through with agreed upon plans can have serious financial consequences. However, victims of a breach of contract in Florida have the option of pursuing civil litigation. By doing so, they can protect themselves and may even help to prevent others from suffering similar consequences.
Source: CBS Minnesota, “NJ Arbitrator Awards Company $2M After Vikings’ Owners Default On Housing Deal“, Nov. 14, 2014