Gibson v. Arnold

288 F.3d 1242 (2002)

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Gibson v. Arnold

United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
288 F.3d 1242 (2002)

Facts

Thomas Gibson (plaintiff) brought a federal-court diversity action for conversion against L. D. Arnold (defendant). No trial record was made of the proceedings. Gibson and Arnold told the magistrate judge that they had orally agreed to settle the case on terms that included Arnold’s confession of wrongdoing, as well as a conveyance and multiyear leaseback of Arnold’s real property. Before Gibson’s attorney could document the settlement in writing and submit that document for Arnold’s signature, the magistrate judge closed the case and dismissed Gibson’s suit with prejudice. Arnold subsequently renounced the settlement, which Gibson then sued to enforce. At trial, Arnold admitted to having agreed to all the terms on which he and Gibson had settled their previous case. Despite the admission, the federal district court ruled that the statute of frauds barred the enforcement of an oral contract for the conveyance of real property and leaseback payments that could not be completed within one year. The court entered summary judgment for Arnold. Gibson appealed to the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Lucero, J.)

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