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Wagner v. Alford

741 So.2d 884 (1999)

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Wagner v. Alford

Louisiana Court of Appeal

741 So.2d 884 (1999)

Facts

The Wagners (plaintiffs) owned a condominium in a complex that was adjacent to a golf and tennis resort. For a $75 monthly fee, the resort provided condominium owners with a variety of services, including garbage collection, sewerage, water, cable, and phone service. Stephen Alford (defendant) owned a real estate company, Rael, Inc., that also owned condominiums in the complex. The resort itself was owned by Toro Investment Corporation (Toro). When the Wagners learned that Toro was interested in selling the resort, they approached Toro management in an effort to preserve their right to a continuation of the services that the resort had been providing. The Wagners and a Toro manager drafted and signed an agreement that purported to guarantee that the services would continue to be provided for the $75 fee and to make the agreement binding on any future owner of the resort. Alford’s company eventually purchased the resort. Rael continued to accept the Wagners’ payment of the services fee and to provide the services for approximately one year. After that, Rael offered condominium owners two different service packages, at higher monthly fees, and refused to accept the Wagners’ attempts to pay just the original $75 fee. The Wagners sued Alford and Rael, alleging that the agreement signed with the Toro manager had created a valid servitude of use binding on Rael as the new resort owner. Alford filed a reconventional demand, alleging that the Wagners had breached an oral agreement under which Rael would give the Wagners an additional condominium in exchange for their assisting Rael in acquiring additional units in the complex. The trial court held for the Wagners on both respects, and Alford appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Amy, J.)

Concurrence/Dissent (Cooks, J.)

Dissent (Doucet, C.J.)

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