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Contract Law Appellate Court Opinion

by Oumano, Emily


AC43738 - Gleason v. Durden (“This case arises out of a dispute between siblings over the disposition of various parcels of real property they acquired from their mother and an uncle. The defendants, Marcella Durden and her husband, Andrew Durden, appeal from the judgment of the trial court finding in favor of the plaintiff, John Gleason, Marcella's brother, on his unjust enrichment claim as to a property the defendants acquired from the plaintiff and another brother, Charles Gleason. Specifically, the defendants claim that the court erred in rendering judgment for the plaintiff on his unjust enrichment claim because (1) the claim was time barred, (2) the court expressly found that the defendants never engaged in unjust or inequitable conduct, and (3) the agreement upon which the court based its judgment was not sufficiently definitive to support a claim of unjust enrichment and was never alleged in the plaintiff's complaint as a basis for recovery. The defendants further claim that the court erred in rendering judgment for Charles on the plaintiff's unjust enrichment claim because Charles was never an adverse party to the defendants and never asserted such a claim against them. With respect to the defendants' appeal, we reverse the judgment of the court.

The plaintiff cross appeals from the judgment of the court rendered in favor of the defendants on the plaintiff's remaining claims. Although the plaintiff's claim on his cross appeal is not entirely clear, he essentially argues that the court should have found that the defendants breached their obligations created by a "confidential relationship" that existed between the parties, awarded him additional damages arising from that breach, and ordered an accounting between the parties. As to the plaintiff's cross appeal, we affirm the court's judgment.”)