LAFOURCHE REALTY COMPANY, INC. AND THE ALLAN COMPANY
ENTERGY LOUISIANA, INC., ENTERGY LOUISIANA HOLDINGS, INC., ENTERGY SERVICES, INC., IRBY CONSTRUCTION COMPANY, IRBY CONSTRUCTION COMPANY OF MISSISSIPPI, HIGHLINES CONSTRUCTION COMPANY, INC., AND FROGCO, INC.
APPEALED FROM THE SEVENTEENTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT IN AND
FOR THE PARISH OF LAFOURCHE STATE OF LOUISIANA DOCKET NUMBER
104457, DIVISION "A" HONORABLE JOHN E. LEBLANC,
Albert Bienvenu New Orleans, Louisiana Attorney for
Plaintiff/Appellant Allan Company -Golden Meadow, LLC
Charlton B. Ogden, III And Sean D. Moore New Orleans,
Louisiana Attorneys for Defendants/ Appellees Entergy
Louisiana, LLC, and Aegis Insurance Services, Ltd.
BEFORE: WHIPPLE, C J., McDONALD, McCLENDON, WELCH, AND CHUTZ,
an appeal from the granting of summary judgment in favor of
Entergy Louisiana, LLC and Aegis Insurance Services, Ltd.
(Entergy, collectively) and against Allan Company-Golden
Meadow, LLC (Allan Company), dismissing Allan
Company's claim for restoration damages. For the
following reasons, we reverse the summary judgment and remand
this matter to the district court.
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
Company is a family company that owns approximately 1, 280
acres of marshland south of Golden Meadow, Louisiana.
Louisiana Power & Light Company, the predecessor to
Entergy, secured a right-of-way agreement in 1957 to
construct, maintain and operate an electric transmission line
in a 100-foot wide strip across six acres of the property.
The transmission line was damaged by Hurricane Katrina. While
using marsh buggies and other equipment to carry out
emergency repairs in September 2005, Entergy damaged Allan
Company's property inside of and adjacent to the
also has a 1957 right-of-way agreement with Lafourche Realty
Company, Inc. (Lafourche Realty), which owns property
adjacent to Allan Company's property. Lafourche
Realty's property was likewise damaged while Entergy was
performing repair work after Hurricane Katrina.
Realty Company, Inc. and Allan Company filed suit based on
the damage to their properties against various Entergy
entities, as well as several other entities not involved in
this appeal. By subsequent amending petitions,
Allan Company members Elizabeth Culver Jahncke, Jeannie
Culver Dragon, and John A. Culver were added as plaintiffs
and additional defendants were named, including Entergy
Louisiana, LLC and Aegis Insurance Services Inc., as the
insurer for Entergy. The claims included tort, breach of
servitude, breach of contract,  and detrimental reliance.
The portion of Allan Company's property that was damaged
is valued at less than $5, 000.00. The estimated cost of
Allan Company's restoration plan exceeds $3 million.
response to various pretrial motions, the district court
ruled that Allan Company's claim for restoration costs,
whether based on servitude law or tort law, would follow the
criteria set out in Roman Catholic Church of the
Archdiocese of New Orleans v. Louisiana Gas Service
Company, 618 So.2d 874, 879-880 (La. 1993). The district
court signed a written judgment in accordance with that
ruling on September 5, 2014. Subsequently, Entergy filed a
motion for summary judgment seeking to dismiss Allan
Company's claim for restoration damages under Roman
Catholic Church  Following a hearing, the district court
granted Entergy's motion for summary judgment and by
judgment signed on November 30, 2016, dismissed Allan
Company's claim for restoration damages. Allan Company
court issued a rule to show cause order ex proprio
motu on June 21, 2017, noting that the November 30, 2016
judgment appeared to be a partial judgment, as it did not
dispose of all the claims and issues in the case and,
moreover, did not contain the designation of finality
required by La. C.C.P. art. 1915(B). This court gave the
parties until July 21, 2017, to show cause why the appeal
should not be dismissed. Lafourche Realty Company, Inc.
v. Entergy Louisiana, Inc., 17-0849 (La.App. 1st Cir.
the appellate record was supplemented with an order of the
district court designating the judgment as final and
appealable, with written reasons. The rule to show cause was
referred to this appeal panel. Lafourche Realty Company,
Inc. v. Entergy Louisiana, Inc., 17-0849 (La.App. 1st
Cir. 10/27/17) (unpublished).
The district court's November 30, 2016 judgment states:
The only remaining defendants in this motion are Entergy
Louisiana, LLC and Aegis Insurance Services, Ltd.
The Court, considering the evidence, memoranda and the law,
renders the following Judgment. The Court finds that (1) the
restoration damages are grossly disproportionate to the value
of the damaged property; (2) The Allan Company has no
personal reasons for repairing the damage; and (3) The Allan
Company will not likely repair the property as contemplated
by their restoration plan.
IT IS ORDERED[, ] ADJUDGED AND DECREED that Entergy'[s]
Motion for Summary Judgment is hereby
granted, and any and all claims by
Plaintiff, The Allan Company for "restoration
damages" against the Defendants in this case are
designating the partial judgment as final and appealable
under Article 1915(B), the district court determined that
there was no just reason to delay the appeal. The district
court further concluded that Allan Company's restoration
claim was distinct from the remaining unadjudicated claims
because the restoration claim did not involve the same
issues. The district court believed there was little, if any,
possibility that future developments would moot the need for
the appellate court to review the instant partial summary
judgment. Additionally, the district court found the
possibility of the appellate court having to review the
issues related to the restoration claim a second time was
the district court gave explicit reasons for designating the
judgment as final for appeal purposes, an abuse of discretion
standard is applicable to the court's determination of
finality. R.J. Messinger, Inc. v. Rosenblum, 04-1664
(La. 3/2/05), 894 So.2d 1113, 1123. After review of the
designation of finality in light of the factors delineated in
Messinger, we find no abuse of discretion in the
district court's order. Thus, we maintain the appeal.