On its surface, E. Hedinger AG v. Brainwave Science looks like a standard lawsuit alleging breach of contract. But the plaintiff’s claims go much further.
Electromechanical company Hedinger (Wattwil, Switzerland) sued “brain-fingerprinting” company Brainwave Science (Southborough, Mass.) in 2017 in Massachusetts Superior Court over a distribution agreement that Hedinger claims Brainwave breached about a year after it was signed in 2016. This week, a federal judge in Delaware ordered Brainwave and Hedinger to arbitration over Hedinger’s claims of breach-of-contract, fraud, and of selling counterfeit technology.
Brainwave’s former chief scientist and inventor of brain-fingerprinting technology, Lawrence Farwell, told the New York Times in 2017 that Brainwave uses a counterfeit version of his invention, which scans the brain to determine whether someone is lying. Brainwave’s attorney, Jason Snyderman of Blank Rome in Philadelphia, did not respond to requests for comment.
Hedinger does not want to arbitrate the case and claims Brainwave previously waived its right to do so. Hedinger also argued that some of its claims — including ones that “are premised on Defendants’ peddling counterfeit technology” — are separate from the partnership agreement and therefore cannot be arbitrated under it, according to the memorandum.
Delaware federal Judge Maryellen Noreika dismissed three counts of Hedinger’s claim and wrote that the parties must arbitrate the rest. Hedinger’s attorney, Robert McHale of Boston, also did not respond to requests for comment.