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Complete Truck and Equipment Sales, Inc., Canada v. Alex Lyon & Son Sales Managers & Auctioneers

March 19, 2010

COMPLETE TRUCK AND EQUIPMENT SALES, INC., CANADA, PLAINTIFF,
v.
ALEX LYON & SON SALES MANAGERS & AUCTIONEERS, INC., DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Hon. Glenn T. Suddaby, United States District Judge

DECISION and ORDER

Currently before the Court in this breach-of-contract action filed by Complete Truck and Equipment Sales, Inc. ("Plaintiff") against Alex Lyon & Son Sales Managers & Auctioneers, Inc. ("Defendant") is a motion for summary judgment filed by Plaintiff. (Dkt. No. 19.) For the reasons set forth below, Plaintiff's motion is granted on the issue of liability, and further briefing is solicited from the parties on the issue of interest and special damages.

I. BACKGROUND

A. Summary of Plaintiff's Complaint

Generally, Plaintiff's Complaint alleges that Defendant breached a contract that it entered into with Plaintiff, causing Plaintiff to suffer both general and special damages. (See generally Dkt. No. 1 [Plf.'s Compl.].) More specifically, liberally construed, Plaintiff's Complaint alleges as follows.

On or about March 28, 2001, Plaintiff delivered to Defendant a Standby Letter of Credit in the amount of $100,000 (in U.S. Dollars), in order to permit Plaintiff to bid at an auction to be conducted by Defendant on March 29, 2001. (Id. at ¶ 7.)

At some point before the auction occurred, Plaintiff (located in Ontario, Canada) contracted with Ramiro Pozo to act as Plaintiff's agent at the auction. (Id. at ¶¶ 6, 8, 9.) Moreover, Plaintiff placed Defendant on notice, or gave Defendant actual knowledge, that Mr. Pozo would be acting as Plaintiff's agent at the auction. (Id. at ¶ 10.)

At the auction, Plaintiff, acting through Mr. Pozo, purchased four trucks from Defendant for the aggregate purchase price of $76,095.00. (Id. at ¶¶ 6, 9.) Pursuant to the purchase agreement, Defendant agreed to deliver clear and marketable title to the four trucks in exchange for Plaintiff paying Defendant the sum of $76,095.00. (Id. at ¶ 14.) At some point during or after the purchase, Defendant was directed that the titles to the four trucks be sent to "Plaintiff care of Robert Ryan, Plaintiff's President, at 21 Enterprise Dr., London, Ontario, Canada." (Id. at ¶ 12.)

Subsequently, Plaintiff caused payment to be made to Defendant in the amount of $76,095.00. (Id. at ¶¶ 7, 11.) However, Defendant failed to deliver the titles to Plaintiff. (Id. at ¶ 15.) Instead, Defendant delivered the titles (and possession) to Mr. Pozo, who then breached his contract with, and fiduciary duty to Plaintiff, by failing to deliver the titles (and possession) to Plaintiff. (Id. at ¶¶ 13, 17, 19, 23.)

Plaintiff alleges that, as a result of Defendant's breach of contract, Plaintiff has suffered damages in excess of $150,000. (Id. at ¶ 17.) More specifically, Plaintiff alleges that its damages consist of the following: (1) $76,095.00 for the purchase price of the four trucks; (2) more than $73,095.00 in (a) lost profits due to an inability to resell the trucks at a profit,*fn1 (b) expenses incurred in connection with attempting to obtain clear title to, and possession of, the four trucks, and (c) interest on the $76,095.00 amount from the date of the auction (March 29, 2001). (Id. at ¶¶ 9, 11, 14, 16, 17, & "Wherefore" Clause.)

Familiarity with the remaining factual allegations supporting this claim in Plaintiff's Complaint is assumed in this Decision and Order, which is intended primarily for review by the parties. (Id.)

The Court notes that Plaintiff's Complaint also asserts claims against Ramiro Pozo, the individual hired by Plaintiff to act as its agent at Defendant's auction. (Dkt. No. 1, ¶¶ 18-24.) More specifically, Plaintiff's Complaint asserts against Mr. Pozo claims of breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty. (Id.) However, on June 21, 2007, Plaintiff voluntarily dismissed its claims against Mr. Pozo, pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 41(a)(1)(i), due to its inability to locate and serve him. (Dkt. No. 7.) As a result, the Court will not address the merits of these claims in the Decision and Order.

B. Undisputed Material Facts

The following is a general summary of material facts that are undisputed by the parties.(Compare Dkt. No. 19, Attach. 7 [Plf.'s Rule 7.1 Statement] with Dkt. No. ...


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