The Fifth Court had good news, and bad news, for the plaintiff suing for breach of an alleged oral contract in Midwest Compressor Systems v. Highland Imperial, Inc.:

GOOD NEWS: “Gerber testified not only that Prince solicited the compressors and urged him to deliver them quickly, but also testified about Highland’s receipt and use of the compressors. This evidence creates at least a question of fact regarding the existence of oral leases. See Tex. Bus. & Com. Code § 2A.204(a) (‘A lease contract may be made in any manner sufficient to show agreement, including conduct by both parties which recognizes the existence of a lease contract.’)”.

BAD NEWS:Midwest did not bill in advance for each day of Highland’s use; it billed in arrears for the 30 days’ use that had already occurred. Hence an invoice dated June 30 expressly stated it was for ‘June compressor rental.’ Thus, although the amount required for each lease could have been less than $1,000 if the leases had terminated after one day, each lease on which Midwest sought payment continued for thirty days and Midwest admitted the total amount fell within the statute [of frauds.]” No. 05-19-01115-CV (June 22, 2021) (mem. op.).

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