Nat’l Fire Ins. Co. of Hartford v. Brown & Martin Co., Inc.
In Nat’l Fire Ins. Co. of Hartford v. Brown & Martin Co., Inc., Henry P. Wall obtained summary judgment for Brown & Martin in the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina. The case involved a mistake in bid on a construction contract for the City of Columbia, and it was a case of first impression in South Carolina. The City of Columbia refused to allow Brown & Martin to withdraw its bid even though the mistake was of a mathematical clerical nature. Wall persuaded the District Court, and subsequently the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, that such relief is legally appropriate for contractors who make innocent bid errors. This case established the law of unilateral mistakes in bids in South Carolina and was closely followed by several trade organizations such as the Associated General Contractors of America who submitted an extensive amicus brief.
Nat’l Fire Ins. Co. of Hartford v. Brown & Martin Co., Inc., 726 F. Supp. 1036 (D.S.C. 1989), aff’d, 907 F.2d 1139 (4th Cir. 1990).