South Carolina Court of Appeals Decision

scctappealsIn Moorhead Construction, Inc. v. Enterprise Bank, the South Carolina Court of Appeals vacated the master’s award of money damages against Enterprise and remanded to the master.

Moorhead was hired as the general contractor for a real estate project, involving three plots of land, that was planned by Pendleton Station.  The project developments were financed for Pendleton by Enterprise Bank.  Pendleton eventually defaulted on its loan to Enterprise and executed a deed to the properties to Enterprise.  Left unpaid, Moorhead then sued Pendleton for breach of contract and Enterprise for foreclosure.

A master entered money judgments for Moorhead against Enterprise.  Enterprise appealed, arguing that the master had no authority to enter a money judgment against it.  Citing S.C. Code of Laws Section 29-5-10 to 29-5-440, the Court of Appeals held that the procedures for following the enforcement of a mechanic’s lien “must be strictly followed.”  It held that Enterprise “cannot be liable for money judgments because the Respondents had no contractual relationship with Enterprise Bank….”  The Court held that the “exclusive remedy available” to Moorhead was the foreclosure of its mechanic’s lien.  Thus the Court found that the “master erred in award judgments on the Respondent’s foreclosure claims.”

About Lisa Smith-Butler

Associate Professor of Law Charleston School of Law 385 Meeting St., Suite 322B Charleston, S.C. 29403 843.377.2144
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