Bald, Fat & Ugly v. Keane

Richard and Lisa Keane and the companies they managed, and Bald, Fat & Ugly, LLC (BFU) had a disagreement arising from a development deal involving the Houston Professional Plaza. They went to mediation, but the parties had a disagreement regarding the terms of the mediated agreement. They then turned to arbitration. The arbitrator granted two awards in favor of BFU. The award did not specify any date by which the Keanes were to pay the money, nor did the award include interest. The district court confirmed the arbitration awards, and issued a writ of execution. The sheriff returned the writ not satisfied. BFU then obtained an order for a debtor's examination. A partial satisfaction of judgment was made, but the Keanes did not direct how the payment made was to be applied to the two arbitration awards. BFU applied the partial satisfaction to one of the awards, and filed a motion to have the Keanes held in contempt for failing to pay the second. The Keanes challenged the contempt action. The Supreme Court, after its review of the matter, found that because the order confirming the arbitration award did not require the Keanes to do anything and because contempt cannot be used to enforce payment of the debt in this case, the Court reversed the judgment of the district court finding them in contempt and the order later entered awarding the respondent attorney fees and court costs. View "Bald, Fat & Ugly v. Keane" on Justia Law