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Lewiston Bottled Gas Co. v. Key Bank of Maine

Maine Supreme Judicial Court
601 A.2d 91 (1992)


Facts

In 1986, Key Bank of Maine (Key Bank) (defendant) loaned William J. DiBiase, Jr. money to buy land to build the Grand Beach Inn. DiBiase gave Key Bank a mortgage covering after-acquired fixtures as security, which Key Bank recorded under DiBiase’s name, as the record owner of the land. DiBiase incorporated Grand Beach Inn, Inc. (Grand Beach) in 1987. Grand Beach then bought ninety heat-and-air units from Lewiston Bottled Gas Company (LBG) on credit and granted LBG a purchase-money security interest (PMSI). The contract stated that the units were personal property, not fixtures. LBG filed financing statements under Grand Beach’s name. DiBiase took another loan from Key Bank and granted it a second mortgage. Key Bank did not discover LBG’s fixture filings in its title search, because Key Bank only searched DiBiase’s name. In 1989, Key Bank foreclosed. When Key Bank discovered LBG’s interest, both parties agreed to table the issue until after the foreclosure. Key Bank bought the property at the foreclosure sale. LBG sued Key Bank, asserting that its PMSI had priority. Key Bank was granted summary judgment, and LBG appealed to the Maine Supreme Judicial Court.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Clifford, 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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