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Monday, September 24, 2012, 9:00 AM

COA: Oral arguments this week

This week, the Court of Appeals will hear four oral arguments:
See here for the full calendar.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012, 10:53 PM

COA: UDAP Claim Must Be Independent from Breach of Contract Claim or Must Have Substantial Aggravating Circumstances

Yesterday the Court of Appeals made clear that an unfair and deceptive acts or practices claim must be based on acts standing separate and apart from a breach of contract claim or, if based upon a breach of contract, a Chapter 75 claim must be accompanied by “substantial aggravating circumstances." The case is SunTrust Bank v. Bryant/Sutphin Properties et al.

Plaintiff SunTrust and Defendants Bryant/Sutphin Properties, LLC (“BSP”) and Donal Sutphin entered into a Commercial Note and loan agreement whereby plaintiff would provide defendant BSP funds to finance a real estate development project. SunTrust sued defendants for breaching the terms of the agreements based on an alleged failure to pay. Defendants claimed that SunTrust's action of placing a hold on certain accounts so that no funds could be withdrawn disrupted their business and the real estate project. Defendants claimed that the reezing of accounts was an unfair and deceptive act or practice, regardless of whether it was a breach of the loan or account agreement between the parties. The matter went to trial and the jury found that neither SunTrust or defendants breached any of the agreements, but found SunTrust liable for unfair or deceptive acts or practices. The damages were trebled as to defendant BSP.

The Court of Appeals found that Defendants' Chapter 75 claim could not be separated from the breach of contract claim, and that SunTrust did nothing "extracontractual" that could constitute an unfair or deceptive act. The Court further noted that while placing a hold on bank accounts without prior notice may have been surprising to defendants and may have disrupted their business, it was not “immoral, unethical, oppressive, unscrupulous, or substantially injurious to consumers," as required by Chapter 75.

The Court also noted that without an independent CHapter 75 claim based upon some
conduct outside the scope of the contracts, an award for such a claim could only be entered if the jury found a breach of contract accompanied by “[s]ubstantial aggravating circumstances.” Because the jury did not find a breach of contract, there could be no Chapter 75 violation.

Opinion Breakdown from 9/18/12 COA Opinions

As Amanda mentioned, yesterday the Court of Appeals released its latest set of opinions.  The next scheduled release date is October 2, 2012. A more detailed breakdown of the opinions follows after the jump:
Read more »


Tuesday, September 18, 2012, 9:14 PM

COA Opinions for September 18, 2012.

The COA published six opinions today, two domestic, one criminal, and three civil. We will have more on any civil cases of interest later.

Thursday, September 13, 2012, 10:32 AM

Federalist Society Appellate Candidate Forum

On September 26, 2012, the Triangle Chapter of the Federalist Society will be holding a candidate forum featuring the candidates for the North Carolina Supreme Court and Court of Appeals at the Cardinal Club.  In case you have not heard much about these races, Justice Paul Newby and Judge Sam Ervin, IV are running for the Newby seat on the Supreme Court, Judge Cressie Thigpen and Raleigh attorney Chris Dillon are running for the Thigpen seat on the Court of Appeals, Judge Wanda Bryant and District Court Judge Marty McGee are running for the Bryant seat on the Court of Appeals, and Judge Linda McGee and Raleigh attorney David Robinson are running for the McGee seat on the Court of Appeals.

The evening begins with a networking reception at 5:30.  The candidate forum will run from 6:30-8:00 and will be moderated by Donna Martinez of NewsRadio 680 WPTF.  This event provides an opportunity to hear directly from candidates in important races that typically receive very little media coverage.  There is no cost to attend.  Space is limited, so if you would like to attend, please RSVP to

Sunday, September 09, 2012, 2:17 PM

COA: Oral arguments this week

This week, the Court will hear oral arguments in two cases:

Wednesday, 9/12/12 at 1:00 p.m.: Hodgin v. United Community Bank, 12-383.

Thursday, 9/13/12 at 9:30 a.m.: McAdoo v. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 12-256.

See here for the full calendar of arguments.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012, 8:45 AM

COA Opinions (9/4/12)

Today the North Carolina Court of Appeals released 11 published opinions and 24 unpublished opinions. 
Here is a quick summary of the today's cases:
  • Published Opinions
    • Civil - 6
    • Criminal - 3
    • Domestic - 2
  • Unpublished Opinions
    • Civil -3
    • Criminal - 10
    • Domestic - 11
  • Opinion Authors
    • Beasley - 3
    • Bryant - 4
    • Calabria - 2
    • Ervin - 1
    • Geer - 3
    • Hunter, Robert C. - 1
    • Hunter, Jr., Robert N. - 2
    • McCullough - 2
    • McGee - 5
    • Steelman - 4
    • Stroud - 4
    • Thigpen - 4
  • Dissents
    • Calabria - 1
 A more detailed breakdown follows after the jump.  The next release date for Court of Appeals' Opinions is September 18, 2012.
Read more »
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