January 17, 2017
Stacey & Lisa Powell v. Matthew Powell, 16-CV-314
In this matter, the Plaintiffs filed a lawsuit against the Defendant in the General Sessions Court for Benton County. The cause of action was breach of contract for an alleged unpaid debt of a specified amount.
Meridian Law successfully defended the action. The trial court dismissed the case on Defendant’s motion after a trial on the merits. At trial, the Plaintiff failed to introduce any evidence of a contract memorializing any actual debt owed. Meridian Law successfully argued that on an action for an unpaid debt, the parties must have a writing, signed by the person against whom the contract is to be enforced pursuant to the statute of frauds. T.C.A. 29-2-101.
Tennessee, like many other states, has a law on the books called the Statute of Frauds. This is an important law to know and understand, especially if you are considering loaning someone money. Tennessee’s Statute of Frauds states that certain types of contracts must be in writing in order to be enforced. Absent a writing, the contract cannot be enforced. The most common mistake we see, is that creditors loan money without a written contract. As in the case above, if there is no written contract, a creditor cannot enforce the agreement and is precluded by law from filing a lawsuit to collect the debt.
If you are considering loaning someone money, or entering into any other type of monetary transaction, you should reduce your agreement to a writing and have it signed by all parties. If you have been sued, or need to file suit to collect a debt, Meridian Law may be able to assist. Meridian Law can also assist in the drafting and review of contracts.
If you think Meridian Law can help you, give us a call today at 615-229-7499 or email email@example.com.