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R & F Financial Services v. North American Building Solutions, et al.

Docket No. 20190287
Oral Argument: Tuesday, October 27, 2020 1:30 PM

Docket Info

Title
R & F Financial Services, LLC, Plaintiff and Appellant
v.
Cudd Pressure Control, Inc., and RPC, Inc., Defendants and Appellees
and
North American Building Solutions, LLC, Defendant
Case Type
CIVIL APPEAL : CONTRACTS
Appeal From
Case No. 2016-CV-01331
Northwest Judicial District, Williams County
Benjamen James Johnson
Oral Argument 10/27/2020

Parties' Statement of Issues

  • Appellant

    1. The trial court erred when it failed to give full effect to the agreement of the parties, NABS and Cudd, under the applicable provisions of the Uniform Commercial Code and determine that a finance lease was created by the parties.
    2. If the parties’ agreement, making the effective commencement date of the lease June 5, 2012, is for some reason found to be ineffective for purposes of creating a finance lease with respect to the first 28 units, the agreement should be deemed severable and a finance lease should be found to exist with respect to the final 32 units.
    3. The trial court erred in finding the defenses of impossibility of performance and frustration of purpose applied to Cudd’s breach of the Lease Agreement.
    4. The District Court abused its discretion in denying R & F’s Motion for attorneys’ fees.

  • Appellee 1

    [1] The district court did not err in finding that the Lease was not a finance lease under the applicable provisions of the Uniform Commercial Code – Leases.
    [2] The district court did not err in not severing the transaction related to the final 32 Modules and in not finding that transaction to be a finance lease.
    [3] The district court did not err in finding that the defenses of impracticability and frustration of purpose applied to Cudd’s performance under the Lease.


Summary

R & F Financial Services (R & F) appeals from a district court order dismissing its claims against Cudd Presure Control (Cudd) and RPC and granting Cudd’s and RPC’s counterclaims and cross claims.

North American Building Solutions (NABS) entered into a lease agreement with Cudd in 2011. NABS then assigned its rights under the lease to R & F. The lease was for sixty (60) temporary housing modules and was to last a period of sixty (60) months. During the term of the lease, the property on which the modules sat was annexed into the city limits of Williston. Thereafter Williston passed ordinances that banned the use of the modules as housing inside of city limits. Cudd sent a notice to NABS stating that the lease was terminated by operation of law. R & F sued for breach of contract and the district court found that (1) the lease was not a financial lease, (2) because the lease was not a financial lease, there was no ‘hell or high-water’ provision, and (3) the doctrines of impossibility of performance and frustration of purpose were applicable.

On appeal, R & F argues that the court erred in finding that the Lease was not a finance lease and that the court erred in finding the doctrines of impossibility of performance and frustration of purpose to be applicable.


Briefs

Filing Date Description
06/11/2020 APPELLANT BRIEF View
07/27/2020 APPELLEE BRIEF View
08/21/2020 REPLY BRIEF View

Counsel

Party Type Name
APPELLANT PRIVATE PRACTICE Rebecca S Thiem - 03693
APPELLEE PRIVATE PRACTICE Kent A Reierson - 03685
APPELLANT PRIVATE PRACTICE Joseph A Turman - 03128
APPELLANT PRIVATE PRACTICE Katrina Annette Turman Lang - 06119
APPELLEE PRIVATE PRACTICE Trevor A. Hunter - 07959

(Note: Attachments may not be available for recently filed cases and/or confidential documents.)

Seq. # Filing Date Description Attachment
1 09/18/2019 NOTICE OF APPEAL : 09/18/2019
2 09/18/2019 ORDER FOR TRANSCRIPT : 09/20/2019
3 09/18/2019 Notice of Appearance by Rebecca Thiem for Appellant
4 09/20/2019 NOT. OF FILING NOT. OF APPEAL AND PROOF OF SERV.
5 09/20/2019 Notice served on Joseph A. Turman, Rebecca S. Thiem, Trevor A. Hunter & Kent A. Reierson
6 09/20/2019 Notice served on North American Building Solutions
7 09/20/2019 Rec'd $125.00 filing fee (receipt #27372)
8 10/16/2019 ELEC. RECORD ON APPEAL DATED OCTOBER 15, 2019 (ENTRY NOS. #1 - #331)
9 11/01/2019 ELECTRONIC TRANSCRIPT DATED MAY 23, 2019
10 11/01/2019 C.O.S for Transcript dated 5-23-19
11 11/05/2019 Stipulation to Remand
12 11/05/2019 ACTION BY CHIEF JUSTICE - Granted
13 11/06/2019 ORDER OF REMAND
14 11/06/2019 Briefing stayed during remand
15 04/25/2020 ELEC. RECORD ON APPEAL DATED APRIL 24, 2020 (ENTRY NOS. 1-254, 256-269, 271-378)
16 04/28/2020 MOT. EXT/TIME APPELLANT BRIEF (sua sponte due to remand)
17 04/28/2020 ACTION BY CLERK (sua sponte due to remand) - Granted : 05/28/2020
18 04/30/2020 1ST ELEC. SUPP. RECORD ON APPEAL DATED APRIL 29, 2020 (ENTRY NOS. 379-386)
19 05/19/2020 MOT. EXT/TIME APPELLANT BRIEF
20 05/19/2020 ACTION BY CLERK - Granted : 06/11/2020
21 05/19/2020 AMENDED NOTICE OF APPEAL
22 05/20/2020 NOT. OF FILING AMENDED NOT. OF APPEAL AND PROOF OF SERV.
23 05/20/2020 Notice served on Joseph A. Turman, Rebecca S. Thiem, Trevor A. Hunter, Kent A. Reierson,
24 05/20/2020 & North American Building Solutions LLC
25 05/22/2020 Amended MOT. EXT/TIME APPELLANT BRIEF
26 05/26/2020 2ND ELEC. SUPP. RECORD ON APPEAL DATED MAY 26, 2020 (ENTRY NOS. 387-390)
27 05/29/2020 Ext. remains granted
28 06/11/2020 APPELLANT BRIEF View
29 06/11/2020 APPELLANT APPENDIX
30 06/11/2020 Oral Argument Request by Appellant
31 06/15/2020 Rec'd non-substantive corrections ATB (toc)
32 06/16/2020 Rec'd $69 for ATA over page limit (receipt #27756)
33 06/17/2020 Rec'd 5 copies of ATB & 4 copies of ATA from CSD
34 07/02/2020 MOT. EXT/TIME APPELLEE BRIEF
35 07/02/2020 ACTION BY CLERK - Granted : 07/27/2020
36 07/27/2020 APPELLEE BRIEF View
37 07/27/2020 Oral Argument Request by Appellee
38 07/27/2020 APPELLEE APPENDIX
39 07/28/2020 Rec'd $136.50 for 273 pages over 100 in Appendix (receipt #27794)
40 08/04/2020 MOT. EXT/TIME REPLY BRIEF
41 08/05/2020 ACTION BY CLERK - Granted : 08/20/2020
42 08/06/2020 Rec'd 5 copies of AEB and 4 copies of AEA back from CSD
43 08/19/2020 Non-compliant Reply Brief received (over page count)
44 08/21/2020 MOTION FOR ADDITIONAL PAGES FOR REPLY BRIEF
45 08/21/2020 ACTION BY CHIEF JUSTICE
46 08/21/2020 ACTION BY CHIEF JUSTICE (2 additional pages) - Granted
47 08/21/2020 REPLY BRIEF View
48 08/25/2020 Rec'd 5 copies of RYB back from CSD
49 09/22/2020 NOTICE OF ORAL ARGUMENT SENT
50 10/27/2020 APPEARANCES: Joseph A. Turman; Katrina A. Turman Lang; Rebecca S. Thiem; Trevor A. Hunter
51 10/27/2020 ARGUED: Joseph A. Turman; Katrina A. Turman Lang; Trevor A. Hunter
52 10/27/2020 ORAL ARGUMENT WEBCAST