Law Offices of Robin Bresky Wins Affirmance of Grant of Summary Judgment of Foreclosure and Dismissal of Counterclaims in Suit by Subcontractor Against Lender’s Assignee

Law Offices of Robin Bresky Wins Affirmance of Grant of Summary Judgment of Foreclosure and Dismissal of Counterclaims in Suit by Subcontractor Against Lender’s Assignee

Pro-Frame Contracting, Inc. v. Highfields Development, LLC, 4D12-1886

The Law Offices of Robin Bresky successfully defended against an appeal by a subcontractor from a summary judgment of foreclosure and dismissal of counterclaims in an action stemming from a construction project. The plaintiff was a subcontractor who had performed work on property that was being developed. A shareholder of the property-owner corporation later formed a separate corporation. The new corporation obtained an assignment of the mortgage from the lender and brought foreclosure proceedings. The subcontractor counterclaimed against the assignee corporation and the shareholder for unjust enrichment, quantum meruit, and foreclosure of equitable lien.

The trial court granted summary judgment of foreclosure in favor of the plaintiff, but initially allowed the subcontractor’s counterclaims to survive. The trial court later dismissed the counterclaims for failure to state a valid legal claim. The subcontractor appealed to the Fourth DCA.

The subcontractor argued on appeal that the assignment of mortgage the appellee obtained was not a valid assignment, but a satisfaction, because the individual appellee was a shareholder of both the owner and the assignee corporation. We argued in opposition that such assignments were valid under Florida law based on the separate nature of the corporate entities and their ability to obtain assignments in their own name from a third party. We also maintained that a subcontractor in the appellant’s position could not bring causes of action for unjust enrichment, quantum meruit, and foreclosure of equitable lien against the appellee because the subcontractor could not be said to have bestowed a direct benefit on the appellee as the lender’s assignee.

The Fourth DCA entered a per curiam affirmance (“PCA”) of the trial court’s orders. This result preserves the trial court’s order of foreclosure in favor of our clients and dismissal of the counterclaims against them.

**The mandate in this appeal has not yet issued**