Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Horton v. DaimlerChrysler Financial Services Americas, L.L.C. case brief

Horton v. DaimlerChrysler Financial Services Americas, L.L.C. case brief summary
262 S.W.3d 1 (2008)

Appellant individual challenged a decision of the 62nd Judicial District Court, Hopkins County (Texas), which granted summary judgment under Tex. R. Civ. P. 166a(c) in favor of appellees, a company and its agent, in connection with the individual's breach of contract action.

All seemed to concede that the individual owed a debt to the company, which was settled through the agent. After learning that his credit report still contained adverse information concerning the account, the individual sued, but the trial court granted the company and agent summary judgment.


  • On appeal, the court reversed and remanded. 
  • While the company and agent could have included a specific manner of acceptance in their offer to the individual, the plain language of the offer did not contain any such requirement. 
  • The individual's act in tendering the first installment was a clear, unequivocal act indicating acceptance. 
  • This act informed the company and agent that the offer had been accepted and was within the time specified for acceptance of the offer. 
  • Thus, a contract was formed when the individual tendered the first installment. 
  • There were genuine issues of material fact concerning whether the company and agent waived the payment due date requirements. 
  • Because there were genuine issues of material fact, the trial court erred in granting the joint motion for summary judgment.

The court reversed the summary judgment and remanded for further proceedings.

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