Court rules that offer of judgment sanctions apply to mixed law and equity case
Claude McManus sued Kevin Toler after his sale of an American Express Financial Services franchise went awry. McManus wanted his daughter to share in the purchase, however, she could not obtain the necessary licenses on a timely basis, even after extensions were granted. McManus then sued Toler, alleging breach of contract, and rejected an Offer of Judgment. The Circuit Court awarded Toler $50,000.00 in attorneys fees and costs after Toler prevailed by verdict. McManus argued that since his claim involved both equitable and legal principles, the offer of judgment rule was not applicable and would not support sanctions. The Court of Appeals disagreed and distinguished this case from the prior decisions by Michigan's Supreme Court that had refused to apply the Court Rule to equitable controversies that did not involve a "sum certain."