Polsinelli law firm hit with suit accusing it of not paying nearly $300,000 bill for IT project

By Jonathan Bilyk | Apr 4, 2014

A Schaumburg-based IT contractor is suing a law firm over claims it has refused to pay almost $300,000 for an information technology project the contractor completed on an expedited basis over the holidays.

IncWorx Consulting brought its action March 19 in Chicago's federal court against Polsinelli, a law firm headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., with offices in Chicago, St. Louis, New York, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., and several other U.S. cities.

IncWorx is represented by attorneys Thomas G. Griffin and Kevin O’Neill of Walker Wilcox Matousek LLP in Chicago.

The suit centers on a professional services agreement IncWorx contends it reached in November 2013 with Polsinelli, a firm formerly known as Polsinelli Shughart.

At that time, the suit states Polsinelli enlisted the services of IncWorx to complete a project using Microsoft SharePoint software on behalf of “its largest client,” identified in the complaint as Catholic Health Initiatives, a Colorado-based company operating dozens of hospitals and other health care facilities in 17 states.

IncWorx asserts Polsinelli told it the project was urgent and very important to the firm, as Catholic Health Initiatives accounted for millions of dollars a month in revenue for the firm, or about 9 percent of its revenue.

The suit states Polsinelli told the IT contractor “’to do whatever it takes’ to quickly deliver a working product" to its client.

IncWorx contends it entered into an agreement with Polsinelli, which included language specifying the special rushed nature of the project, as well as the larger than usual overtime and other associated costs, that included a provision for 1,000 billable hours.

The Schaumburg contractor claims it started the project, working “nights, weekends and holidays over Christmas and New Year” in order to complete the project on the expedited timetable. By early January, the suit states IncWorx had already used the billable hours allotted in the original contract, and requested an additional 1,000 hours.

IncWorx alleges in its complaint the additional hours were authorized by a Polsinelli representative and that it completed the project in mid-February, after which time the firm took development of the finished product.

Polsinelli, according to the suit, indicated to IncWorx it was pleased with the product and that Catholic Health Initiative had put into use several of the project’s key components.

However, at that time, IncWorx asserts Polsinelli refused to pay its invoices.

From there, IncWorx claims it learned Polsinelli had negotiated directly with a subcontractor used by IncWorx on the project for “an additional 100 hours or more of development work in February,” offering future projects to the subcontractor as incentive.

The single-count complaint alleges that Polsinelli breached its contract with IncWorx.

“Polsinelli and its client, Catholic Health Initiatives, continue to use and enjoy the products developed by IncWorx, but defendant Polsinelli has failed and refused to pay outstanding invoices due to IncWorx in the amount of $298,500,” IncWorx asserts.

In its suit, IncWorx has asked the federal court to award damages to it in at least the amount of the allegedly unpaid invoices, plus interest and fees.

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