Farm and Garden Center LLC v. Kennedy

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Farm and Garden Center LLC v. Kennedy

Case Number
A-17-0834
Court Number
Madison
Call Date
September 13, 2018
Case Time
1:30 PM
Extended Case Summary

A-17-834, Farm and Garden Center, LLC v. Kennedy

Original Trial Court: District Court for Madison County, Judge James G. Kube

Attorneys: George H. Moyer and Jack W. Lafleur(Moyer & Moyer)(for appellant Kennedy); Sean A. Minahan (Lamson, Dugan and Murray, LLP) and Frederick T. Bartell (Fitzgerald, Vetter, Temple & Bartell)(for appellee Farm and Garden Center, LLC)

Civil Action: Collection of Unpaid Account Sum and Counterclaim of Negligence to Offset Amount Due on Account

Background: Farm and Garden Center sold fertilizer and application services to Kennedy on an open account during the 2012 crop season. Farm and Garden Center sued Kennedy to collect on an overdue account balance, and Kennedy counterclaimed for an offset of damages alleging Farm and Garden Center failed to properly and in a workmanlike manner apply the products to his agricultural fields. The corn on one of the fields appeared to grow normally, but the other fields were shorter and showed streaking. Later in the same season, Farm and Garden Center applied a second application of fertilizer to the fields that were in a weak condition. There was evidence that the first application of fertilizer was misapplied in some places, but there were differing opinions as to the cause of any resulting crop damage or loss. Both parties presented expert testimony of agronomists at trial. The trial court overruled Kennedy’s motion in limine which attempted to exclude the testimony of Farm and Garden Center’s expert witness.

A jury returned a verdict of $104,180.27 in favor of Farm and Garden Center. The jury also returned a verdict in favor of Kennedy on his counterclaim, awarding him $7,511.20, which was an amount equal to the cost billed to Kennedy for the second, remedial application of fertilizer. Kennedy filed a motion for new trial on his counterclaim, claiming the damages awarded to him were contrary to the evidence and the law. Farm and Garden Center filed a motion for prejudgment interest. The trial court denied Kennedy’s motion for new trial, and ordered Kennedy to pay to Farm and Garden Center an additional $46,089.27 in prejudgment interest.

The Nebraska Court of Appeals will consider the following issues raised by Kennedy in his appellate brief:

  1. Did the trial court err in calculating and allowing prejudgment interest on the judgment for Farm and Garden Center?

  2. Is the jury verdict of $7,511.20 on Kennedy’s counterclaim supported by the evidence and does it bear a reasonable relationship to the elements of the damages proved?

  3. Did the trial court abuse its discretion by allowing the testimony of Farm and Garden Center’s expert witness?

Case Location: York College

Court Type: District Court

Panel: Moore, Chief Judge, Bishop, and Arterburn, Judges

Case Location
York College
Court Type
District Court
Schedule Code
A2
Panel Text
Moore, Chief Judge, Bishop, and Arterburn, Judges