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Before Lynch, Chief Judge, Torruella and Ripple, *fn1 Circuit Judges.

This is a contract dispute between the Mueller Group, LLC (“Mueller” or the “Company”) and its former general counsel, George P. Bukuras, over the interpretation of the severance and general release provisions of Bukuras’s employment agreement. The district court granted summary judgment against Bukuras on his claim that the Company breached the terms of his employment when it failed to include in the calculation of his severance compensation a $1 million transaction bonus he received in connection with a sale of the Company, which the district found unsupported by the plain terms of the agreement. See Bukuras v. Mueller Group, LLC, No. 06-11790, 2008 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 64517, at *17 (D. Mass. Aug. 14, 2008). The district court also granted summary judgment against Mueller on its counterclaim alleging that Bukuras’s suit violated a general release of claims executed by Bukuras at the time of his termination, finding that Bukuras’s claim was outside the scope of the release and that, in any event, the release did not support an independent claim for breach which would entitle Mueller to recover its litigation expenses incurred in defending against Bukuras’s claims. Id. at *23-25. On appeal, both parties challenge these determinations. We affirm in all respects.

I. Background

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