Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Gomez v. S & I Properties, LLC

Florida Court of Appeals, Third District

June 7, 2017

Federico Gomez, Appellant,
v.
S & I Properties, LLC and Jenesco Partners, LLC, Appellees.

         Not final until disposition of timely filed motion for rehearing.

         An Appeal from a non-final order from the Circuit Court for Miami-Dade County, No. 14-28096 Rosa I. Rodriguez, Judge.

          Law Offices of Gregory M. Ochalek PLLC and Gregory M. Ochalek, for appellant.

          Law Offices of Mendez & Mendez, P.A., Sergio L. Mendez, and Daniel J. Mendez, for appellees.

          Before ROTHENBERG, SALTER and LUCK, JJ.

          LUCK, J.

         Federico Gomez appeals a nonfinal order denying his motion to dismiss S&I Properties, LLC and Jenesco Partners, LLC's complaint based on an arbitration clause in the parties' contract. We dismiss the appeal for lack of jurisdiction.[1]

         S&I Properties entered into a contract to sell commercial real estate (6113 Southwest 8th Street) to American Land for $4, 725, 000. Jenesco Partners, likewise, entered into a contract to sell commercial real estate (6200 Southwest 8th Street) to American Land for $3, 685, 000. The transactions were conditioned upon American Land successfully closing and conveying a separate piece of property (3905 Gem Twist Court) to a third party for $9, 428, 175. The purchase and sale agreements contemplated an exchange transaction in which American Land would sell the Gem Twist property and use the funds to purchase the Eighth Street properties. Both contracts contained broad arbitration clauses, stating that "[a]ny controversy or claim arising out of or relating to this contract shall be settled by neutral binding arbitration." Gomez, who was the manager for American Land, signed on the company's behalf.

         American Land closed on the Gem Twist property on October 9, 2014 and closing for the Eighth Street properties was scheduled for October 20. Prior to the October 20 closing, however, S&I Properties and Jenesco became aware that American Land would not close on their properties and sent a demand letter to American Land. Ultimately, American Land failed to close on the Eighth Street properties even though it had the money from the sale of the Gem Twist property.

         S&I Properties and Jenesco sued American Land for breach of contract (counts 1 and 2) and specific performance (count 3 and 4). As to both American Land and Gomez, the complaint alleged fraud (count 5), stating that Gomez "fraudulently diverted and transferred the exchange property funds [$9, 428, 175] for his own purposes and did not apply the funds to the purchase of the [Eighth Street] commercial properties."

         Gomez moved to dismiss the complaint because he was not served, he could not be sued in his individual capacity without allegations piercing the corporate veil, and the parties' contract was governed by an arbitration clause. The trial court denied the motion. Gomez appeals the trial court's nonfinal order denying his motion to dismiss.

         Normally, "a defendant cannot appeal a nonfinal order which denies a motion to dismiss." Haridopolos v. Citizens for Strong Sch., Inc., 81 So.3d 465, 468 (Fla. 1st DCA 2011) (en banc) (quotation omitted). The Florida Constitution, however, grants the district courts of appeal jurisdiction to "review" some "interlocutory orders, " but only to "the extent provided by rules adopted by the supreme court." Fla. Const. art. V, § 4(b)(1). Florida Rule of Appellate Procedure 9.130 is the rule adopted by the Florida Supreme Court, and it lists the nonfinal orders that are appealable to the district courts.

         Gomez contends that we have jurisdiction to review the trial court's order denying his motion to dismiss because Rule 9.130(a)(3)(C)(iv) provides for "[a]ppeals . . . of non-final orders . . . that . . . determine . . . the entitlement of a party to arbitration." Fla. R. App. P. 9.130(a)(3)(C)(iv). By denying his motion to dismiss based on the arbitration clause in the real estate contracts, Gomez argues, the trial court necessarily determined that he was not entitled to arbitrate the fraud claim.

         Three times, in Southeastern Title and Insurance Co. v. Curtis, 155 So.2d 855 (Fla. 3d DCA 1963), Weber v. Bonilla-Mathe, 807 So.2d 170 (Fla. 3d DCA 2002), and Hopewell, LLC v. Alarion Bank, 84 So.3d 1073 (Fla. 1st DCA 2012), this court and another district court have addressed this argument (an order denying a motion to dismiss based on an arbitration clause is the same for appellate jurisdiction purposes ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.