Appeal from the District Court of Cass County, East Central Judicial District, the Honorable John C. Irby, Judge.
Ann E. Miller (argued) and Michael T. Andrews (on brief), Fargo, N.D., for plaintiff and appellant.
Joel M. Fremstad (argued) and James A. Teigland (on brief), Fargo, N.D., for defendants and appellees.
Lisa Fair McEvers, Daniel J. Crothers, Carol Ronning Kapsner, Dale V. Sandstrom, Gerald W. VandeWalle, C.J.
Lisa Fair McEvers, Justice.
[¶1] Prairie Supply, Inc. (" Prairie" ) appeals from a district court judgment ordering Prairie to pay Apple Electric, Inc. (" Apple" ) damages for conversion by the wrongful repossession of ground heaters. We affirm, concluding our review of the issues raised by Prairie on appeal is limited to the issue of damages, and the award of damages to Apple is supported by the evidence.
[¶2] In late 2011, Prairie and Apple entered into separate oral lease-to-own agreements for two Thawzall ground heaters, which are used to thaw or soften frozen ground. The combined sales price for the heaters was $70,000. Apple took possession of the heaters and made monthly payments. After Apple made late payments, Prairie repossessed the heaters on July 1, 2012, and sued to recover past due rental payments. Apple had paid over $60,000 to Prairie at the time of repossession.
[¶3] At trial, Apple claimed the agreements were for the purchase of the heaters, and Prairie claimed the agreements were leases and it had the right to repossess the heaters after Apple made late payments. The district court concluded the parties' agreements were purchase agreements, not lease agreements; Prairie's repossession of the heaters was wrongful and constituted conversion; and Apple was entitled to damages of $61,851.94, plus interest at the rate of six percent.
[¶4] After the district court issued its memorandum decision, findings of fact, conclusions of law and order for judgment, Prairie moved for amended findings, additional findings, or in the alternative, a new trial. Prairie requested a new trial on the following grounds: (1) " [t]he damages awarded to [Apple] by the Court were excessive and not supported by law or the evidence presented at trial; " and (2) " there was no evidence presented as to the actual market value of the heaters." The court denied Prairie's motions and a final judgment was entered. Prairie appealed from the district court's memorandum decision, findings of fact, conclusions of law and order for judgment, and judgment. Prairie did not appeal from the court's order denying the motion for amended findings, additional findings, or in the alternative, a new trial.
[¶5] Prairie raises the following issues on ...