Law School Case Brief
Terry Barr Sales Agency v. All-Lock Co. - 96 F.3d 174 (6th Cir. 1996)
The summary judgment test requires the court to determine whether the evidence presents sufficient disagreement to require submission to a jury or whether it is so one-sided that one party must prevail as a matter of law. When reviewing a summary judgment motion, it is essential that the court views the evidence in a light most favorable to the nonmoving party. At the summary judgment stage the judge's function is not to weigh the evidence and determine the truth of the matter but to determine whether there is a genuine issue for trial.
Terry Barr Sales Agency’s representative, Terry Barr Sales, brought suit against All-Lock for breach of contract, unjust enrichment, and promissory estoppel after All-Lock terminated their oral agreement. Terry Barr Sales Agency alleged that it was entitled to commissions from All-Lock after the termination, the lower court granted summary judgment to All-Lock and Terry Barr Sales Agency sought review, contending that genuine issue of material fact existed and summary judgment was improper.
Does a genuine issue of material fact exist, thus, rendering the summary judgment improper?
The court reversed and remanded and held that both parties had presented evidence that supported their position and the weighing of the evidence and determining the truth of the matter was not the function of the trial judge. The court further held that state law was clear that when parties to an express oral contract differ as to the terms thereof, and there was evidence supporting both claims, it was for the jury to determine what the terms of the contract were.
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