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Hofland v. Elgin- Butler Brick Co – Case Brief Summary (Texas)

In Hofland v. Elgin- Butler Brick Co., 834 S.W.2d 409 (Tex. App.--Corpus Christi 1992, no writ), Elgin- Butler Brick and Border Brick and Supply, Inc. had an agreement pursuant to which Elgin-Butler sold brick and Border Brick collected payments for the brick, retained a commission, and forwarded the remaining money to Elgin-Butler. Id. at 411.

The parties also had a lease agreement permitting Elgin-Butler to store brick on Border Brick's property. Id. Border Brick fell behind on payments to Elgin-Butler, and Elgin-Brick filed suit to recover the unpaid sums. Id.

In November 1984, Joyce Hofland, a director and shareholder in Border Brick, agreed to sell Border Brick's assets to Juan Garza. Id.

The contract encompassed all assets of Border Brick, including "brick." Id. Garza then moved the brick owned by Elgin-Butler to another storage facility. Id. at 411-12.

Although Hofland objected to Garza moving the brick, she did not inform Elgin-Butler that the brick had been moved. Id. at 412.

Elgin-Butler discovered the sale of the brick in August of 1988 and amended its petition to include a conversion claim against Hofland and Border Brick. Id.

The trial court awarded Elgin-Butler damages for the conversion and determined the claim was not barred by limitations because it was not discovered until August 1988 and because Hofland fraudulently concealed the sale. Id.

The court of appeals first concluded there was sufficient evidence to support the trial court's finding that the conversion occurred when Hofland sold Border Brick's assets to Garza. Id.