Articles Posted in Nebraska Supreme Court

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The Supreme Court reversed the decision of the district court dismissing Appellants’ claim seeking damages for breach of contract, breach of warranty, and fraudulent misrepresentation after discovering hail damage to the roof of a real property they were under contract to purchase from Appellees. The district court dismissed the complaint with prejudice and without leave to amend, concluding that the damage was reasonably ascertainable by Appellants. In reversing, the Supreme court held that the district court erred when it granted Appellees’ motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim because Appellants alleged sufficient facts to state claims that were plausible on their face. View "Burklund v. Fuehrer" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the district court’s denial of a motion to compel arbitration, although for different reasons than those of the district court. In denying the motion to compel arbitration, the district court concluded that the agreement to arbitrate concerned or related to an insurance policy and was thus unenforceable under Neb. Rev. Stat. 25-2602.01(f)(4). On appeal, Appellant argued that the district court erred in denying the motion to compel arbitration and in determining that arbitration agreement concerned or related to an insurance policy. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that there was a failure of proof regarding the arbitration itself because the record did not show that the relevant parties agreed to submit future disputes to binding arbitration. View "Zweiback Family L.P. v. Lincoln Benefit Life Co." on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the district court’s denial of a motion to compel arbitration, although for different reasons than those of the district court. In denying the motion to compel arbitration, the district court concluded that the agreement to arbitrate concerned or related to an insurance policy and was thus unenforceable under Neb. Rev. Stat. 25-2602.01(f)(4). On appeal, Appellant argued that the district court erred in denying the motion to compel arbitration and in determining that arbitration agreement concerned or related to an insurance policy. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that there was a failure of proof regarding the arbitration itself because the record did not show that the relevant parties agreed to submit future disputes to binding arbitration. View "Zweiback Family L.P. v. Lincoln Benefit Life Co." on Justia Law

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In this breach of contract action brought by a homeowner (Plaintiff) against the company that laid his asphalt driveway (Defendant), the Supreme Court affirmed in part and in part reversed the judgment of the district court that significantly reduced the reduction of the award given by the county court. After Plaintiff’s driveway began to deteriorate prematurely, Plaintiff sued Defendant. The county court entered judgment in favor of Plaintiff. The district court reversed the county court’s determination that Plaintiff’s damages included $26,189 for a two-inch overlay of the entire driveway and remanded the case with directions to enter judgment reflecting damages in the amount of $6,522. On appeal, the Supreme Court held (1) the county court’s verdict should have been limited to plain error; (2) there was no plain error in the county court’s assessment of $26,189 in damages for the two-inch overlay; (3) there was sufficient evidence that it was reasonable and necessary for Plaintiff to contract for a stopgap repair of patchwork replacement of broken sections; and (4) there was no plain error in the county court’s award of discovery sanctions and repairs. View "Houser v. American Paving Asphalt" on Justia Law

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The district court erred in concluding that because of arbitration and venue provisions in an employment contract between the parties, it lacked jurisdiction. Nearly three years into the litigation in this case, the Douglas County District Court indefinitely stayed a claim for dissolution of one business entity, a party in the case, and dismissed sua sponte all other claims, noting that the employment contract contained arbitration and venue provisions that were outside the district court’s jurisdiction. The Supreme Court reversed the stay and dismissal order and remanded the case for further proceedings, holding that because no party sought to enforce the arbitration agreement, it was error for the district court to do so on its own accord. View "Boyd v. Cook" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the trial court, entered after a jury trial, in favor of Otoe County School District 66-0111 in this dispute over amounts owed under a contract between the School District and Facilities Cost Management Group (FCMG). In the first appeal in this case, the Supreme Court concluded that the jury had been erroneously instructed and remanded the cause for a new trial. On retrial, the jury rendered a verdict in favor of the School District. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the trial court did not err in (1) admitting certain evidence; (2) instructing the jury; and (3) ruling on FCMG’s posttrial motions. View "Facilities Cost Management Group v. Otoe County School District 66-0111" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed as modified the district court’s order dismissing with prejudice Plaintiff’s complaint for lack of personal jurisdiction. Plaintiff, an attorney, filed a complaint for breach of contract against Defendant. The trial court dismissed the complaint with leave to amend. Plaintiff then filed an amended complaint including claims for tortious conversion and a violation of Nebraska’s Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act. The Supreme Court affirmed the dismissal of the complaint, holding (1) neither general nor specific personal jurisdiction over Defendant existed; but (2) the district court erred in dismissing the complaint with prejudice. The court modified the district court’s order to a dismissal without prejudice. View "Nimmer v. Giga Entertainment Media, Inc." on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the district court decreeing that a residence be repainted from a blue color to an earth tone after the homeowners association sued to enforce restrictive covenants. The Homeowners appealed, arguing that the plain language of the restrictive covenants did not control the color of repainting. The Supreme Court agreed, holding (1) the restrictive covenants at issue were not ambiguous and did not apply to the Homeowners’ repainting of their residence; and (2) the Homeowners did not, therefore, violate any restrictive covenants when they repainted their residence without first seeking and acquiring approval from the developer. View "Estates at Prairie Ridge Homeowners Ass’n v. Korth" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the trial court entering judgment for Defendants in this tort action filed by a pilot injured in an airplane crash. Patrick O’Brien, a pilot who was seriously injured when the plane he was flying crashed on approach to an airport, sued the aircraft’s designer and manufacturer and the designer and manufacturer or the aircraft’s pneumatic deicing system, asserting strict liability, negligence, and fraudulent misrepresentation claims. The jury returned a general verdict for Defendants. O’Brien appealed, assigning sixty-five claims. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that there was no merit to any of O’Brien’s assigned errors. View "O'Brien v. Cessna Aircraft Co." on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the district court’s order denying an intervener’s motion to intervene in her own behalf in this complaint alleging breach of a lease. Streck, Inc. filed a complaint against the Ryan Family, LLC alleging that the LLC breached a lease agreement containing an option to purchase real property and seeking specific performance. After the LLC responded, a member of the LLC moved to intervene in her own behalf and on behalf of the LLC. The district court denied the motion. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the intervenor failed to allege a direct and legal interest sufficient to support intervention in the litigation between the LLC and Streck. View "Streck, Inc. v. Ryan Family, LLC" on Justia Law