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Posted by: Landry Butler on Jan 31, 2018

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

William Randall O’Bryan, Jr., and Kevin Clayton Baltz, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellants, Fidelity and Deposit Company of Maryland and The Braxton, LLC.

Attorneys 2:

Donald N. Capparella and Timothy W. Burrow, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, TWB Architects, Inc.

Judge(s): BENNETT

This is the second appeal in a dispute over enforcement of a mechanic’s lien. An architect entered into an architect agreement with the developer to build a condominium project in Ashland City, Tennessee. The architect later entered into a purchase agreement with the successor developer to receive a penthouse as “consideration of design fees owed” on the first contract. The architect never received payment for its work and filed suit against the successor developer and its surety to enforce its mechanic’s lien for the amount owed under the architect agreement. The trial court held that the purchase agreement was a novation, extinguishing the rights and obligations of the parties under the architect agreement. In the first appeal, this Court found a lack of intent for a novation and, therefore, reversed the decision of the trial court and remanded the case for further proceedings. On remand, after additional discovery, the architect moved for summary judgment on its claim. The trial court granted summary judgment in favor of the architect. In this appeal, the developer argues that the trial court erred in granting summary judgment on its defense of novation and multiple other defenses. We affirm the decision of the trial court.