FROM THE SIXTEENTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT PARISH OF ST.
MARTIN, NO. 71590 HONORABLE LORI ANN LANDRY, DISTRICT JUDGE
M. Francez Voorhies & Labbe COUNSEL FOR
PLAINTIFF/APPELLANT: Brooks Taylor
G. Young Meade Young, LLC COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT/APPELLEE:
composed of Ulysses Gene Thibodeaux, Chief Judge, Shannon J.
Gremillion, and Candyce G. Perret, Judges.
CANDYCE G. PERRET JUDGE.
an appeal by plaintiff, Brooks Taylor (Mr. Taylor), of an
order dismissing his claims against defendant, David
Duplechin (Mr. Duplechin), on grounds of abandonment. For the
following reasons, we reverse and remand.
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY:
August 9, 2006, Mr. Taylor loaned Dash Equipment &
Supplies, Inc. (Dash) and Mr. Duplechin (hereinafter
collectively "Defendants") $18, 000.00 dollars with
the promissory note providing, in relevant part:
FOR VALUE RECEIVED, the undersigned promises to pay, at the
earlier of November 9, 2006 or when Ace Machine, Inc. pays
for services currently being rendered by Dash . . . to Brooks
Taylor the sum of EIGHTEEN THOUSAND AND N0/100 ($18, 000.00)
DOLLARS, plus an additional sum of Nine Thousand and
No/100ths ($9, 000.00) as interest.
Both principal and interest shall be payable . . . to Brooks
Taylor . . . .
In case this note should be placed in the hands of
attorneys-at-law for the filing of foreclosure proceedings,
to protect the rights of the holder hereof or to enforce any
of the agreements contained in this note or in the act of
mortgage with which this note is identified, the undersigned
herein and hereby agrees to pay the reasonable fees of the
attorneys-at-law who may be employed for such purposes.
a meeting on October 10, 2006, Defendants signed a document
noting that they were unable to pay the promissory note and
agreed to extend the August 9, 2006 contract for thirty days.
This October 10th agreement also stated that "THE
CONTRACT WILL BE ACCESSED [sic] A FEE OF $100.00 PER DAY OR
UNTIL PAID. SCHEDULE EXPIRATION IS NOVEMBER 9, 2006."
January 24, 2007, Mr. Taylor filed suit against Defendants on
the promissory note seeking the principal balance owed,
interest, and a $100 per day fee. On February 5, 2010, Mr.
Taylor filed a Motion and Order for Summary Judgment alleging
that there are no genuine issues of material fact and that
Defendants owe him $18, 000.00 dollars, "together with
interest of $9, 000.00 plus legal interest from the date of
the judicial demand, until paid, plus an assessment fee of
$100.00 per day from October 10, 2006, until paid, for
reasonable attorney's fees to be set by this court, and .
. . costs of these proceedings . . . ."
April 11, 2013, after a hearing, the trial court granted a
partial summary judgment in favor of Mr. Taylor for the
principal amount of the note plus interests and all costs of
the proceedings to date. The trial court denied the rest of
Mr. Taylor's motion for summary judgment reserving the
issues of the $100.00 assessment fee per day and
attorney's fees for a trial on the merits, which was
scheduled for September 4, 2013. Thereafter, the trial court
granted Mr. Taylor's Unopposed Motion and Order to
Continue and Reset Trial Date to December 11, 2013.
December 2, 2013, Defendants filed a Motion for Summary
Judgment alleging that no additional fees are owed under
either the August 9, 2006 promissory note or the October 10,
2006 agreement extending the note. Although Mr. Taylor notes
in his appellate brief that the trial court denied
Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment, the record is
void of this ruling.
December 12, 2013, the trial court granted Defendants'
Amended, Unopposed Motion to Continue Trial and, per the
parties' request, set a new trial date of February 20,
2014. On February 21, 2014, the trial court granted Mr.
Taylor's Unopposed Motion and Order to Continue Trial and
ordered that trial "be reset at a later date."
15, 2016, Mr. Taylor served Interrogatories and Request for
Production of Documents on each of the Defendants. Although
the instructions in both sets of discovery requests properly
identify the Defendants as either "Dash" or
"Mr. Duplechin", the discovery requests mistakenly
define "you" or "yours" as
"Defendant, SEAL INVESTMENTS GROUP, LLC, or all
representatives or other persons acting on his behalf or
request." Nonetheless, the instructions in the requests
for production of documents sought the following information
from Dash and Mr. Duplechin:
REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION NO. 1:
Please produce copies of your 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010,
and 2011 federal income tax returns.
REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION NO. 2:
Please produce copies of all of your 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009,
2010, and 2011 checking account statements from all banks,