Sullivan v. Bullock case brief summary
864 P.2d 184 (1993)
Plaintiff homeowner appealed the
judgment from the District Court of the Third Judicial District,
State of Idaho, Canyon County, finding that although defendant
contractor had not substantially performed under the contract, he had
been prevented from doing so by the homeowner. The plaintiff also
appealed the denial of her motion for judgment notwithstanding the
verdict or for a new trial.
CASE FACTS The homeowner sued the contractor for
damages for breach of a remodeling contract. The contractor filed a
counterclaim. The district court entered a verdict finding that the
contractor had been prevented from completing performance by the
homeowner. The jury awarded the balance of the contract price to the
contractor. The homeowner appealed.
The court held that the finding
that the contractor had not substantially performed under the
contract, but was unreasonably prevented from doing so by the
homeowner, was supported by the evidence.
However, the award of
damages in the full amount of the contract price was erroneous.
evidence did not support the portion of the damages awarded for work
that was not originally contemplated by the parties.
The court also
found that substantial evidence supported the finding that the
contractor did not breach the contract.
Likewise, the jury
instruction on the issue of prevention was adequate.
The court affirmed the denial of the motions in so far as the
decision below held that the homeowner prevented the contractor's
complete performance. However, the court reversed and remanded the
decision to the extent it approved an erroneous measure of damages in
favor of the contractor. The court also vacated the award of attorney
fees and remanded for further consideration by the district court. Suggested law school study materials
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