NATHAN B. OVERTON ET AL. v. WESTGATE RESORTS, LTD., L.P. ET AL. - Articles

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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Jan 30, 2015

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Gregory C. Logue and Robert L. Vance, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Westgate Resorts, Ltd., L.P.

Attorneys 2:

John O. Belcher and Curtis R. Harrington, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellees, Nathan B. Overton and Patricia A. Overton.

Judge(s): FRIERSON

This case involves the propriety of an award of punitive damages in the amount of $600,000. The plaintiffs sued the defendant timeshare developer, seeking to rescind a contract for purchase of a timeshare interest. The plaintiffs alleged, inter alia, that the defendant was guilty of fraud and misrepresentation, as well as violations of the Tennessee Time-share Act and the Tennessee Consumer Protection Act. Following the hearing, the trial court ruled in favor of the plaintiffs and allowed them to rescind the contract, ordering repayment of their purchase money. The trial court found that the defendant had violated the respective statutory provisions and was guilty of fraud and misrepresentation. The trial court thus determined that an award of punitive damages was proper, and following a second hearing regarding the amount of the punitive damage award, set such award at $600,000. The defendant has appealed this award. While we affirm the determination of the trial court that $600,000 represents a reasonable award of punitive damages considering all applicable factors, we must order remittitur of that award to $500,000 in accordance with the statutory cap found in Tennessee Code Annotated § 29-39-104(a)(5).

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