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Azevedo v. Minister

Nevada Supreme Court
471 P.2d 661 (1970)


Facts

In early November 1967, two merchant ranchers, J.L. Azevedo (defendant) and Bolton Minister (plaintiff), orally agreed that Minister would sell hay to Azevedo at an agreed-upon price. The parties further agreed that Azevedo would deposit funds into an escrow account from which Minister would be paid as Azevedo picked up hay from Minister’s ranch. Azevedo deposited $20,000 into escrow and began to haul away hay soon after the agreement was reached. In early December, Minister provided Azevedo a written account statement that specified the dates that hay was taken, its weight, the number of bales, and the names of the truckers. On January 21, 1968, Minister provided another accounting with similar information. Minister added a note to that statement, informing Azevedo that his balance in escrow was low considering that “16,600 bales of hay [were] yet to be hauled on [Azevedo’s] purchase.” Minister requested that additional funds be deposited and that Azevedo inform him of when he would “haul the balance of the hay.” Azevedo deposited an additional $3,000 and did not otherwise respond to the statement. On February 22, Minister again provided a statement specifying Azevedo’s “balance of deposit on approximately 14000 bales remaining to be hauled.” Azevedo did not respond to the statement. In March, Minister declined to provide all of the hay sought by Azevedo because of insufficient funds in escrow. Azevedo refused to purchase any more hay from Minister, who brought suit. Minister claimed that Azevedo had contracted to buy 1,500 tons of hay; Azevedo claimed that no specific amount had been agreed upon. The trial court found in favor of Minister, and Azevedo appealed.

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