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Lewis Electric Co. v. Miller

Iowa Supreme Court
791 N.W.2d 691 (Iowa 2010)


Facts

Miller (defendant) owned hardware stores in Sioux City and Le Mars, Iowa. Miller entered into contracts with Lewis Electric Co. (Lewis) (plaintiff) to perform certain electrical work in the stores. After Lewis substantially performed the contracts, disputes arose regarding the work that Lewis had done and Miller failed to pay a portion of the contracts. Lewis filed suit for breach of contract seeking to recover payments owed under the contracts. Miller countersued for breach of contract, alleging that Lewis’s work at the Le Mars store was defective and seeking to recover the cost of repairing the defective work. The district court found that Lewis did not breach the Le Mars contract and found in favor of Lewis on all claims, although it reduced damages for work in Le Mars that Lewis did not perform after the original dispute arose. Miller appealed with respect to the judgment on the Le Mars contract. The court of appeals reversed the judgment for Lewis on the Le Mars contract, and also reversed the district court’s denial of Miller’s countersuit regarding the Le Mars work. Lewis appealed with regards to the court of appeals’s instructions on remand.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Ternus, C.J.)

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  • A "yes" or "no" answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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