Berkshire Investments, LLC v. TaylorAnnotate this Case
This case was the third appeal to the Supreme Court arising from a 2002 real estate transaction between Thomas and Colleen Birch-Maile and the Theodore L. Johnson Revocable Trust. Attorney and Real Estate Broker Thomas Maile advised the Trust to reject an offer to sell certain trust property. Months later, Mr. Maile submitted an earnest money agreement for the same property. The prospective buyers, collectively the Taylors, sued the Mailes and Berkshire Investments, LLC (the company that the Mailes formed and to whom they assigned rights to the property) for professional malpractice and breach of fiduciary duties. The Mailes filed suit seeking to set aside a 2006 judgment against them, which the Court affirmed in the second appeal. The district court determined on summary judgment that the 2006 judgment was res judicata with regard to the issues raised in the Mailes' complaint. At trial the jury awarded damages against the Mailes on the Taylors' counterclaim. The Mailes appealed and the Supreme Court affirmed: the district court was correct in summarily dismissing the Mailes' lawsuit and denying their motion for JNOV. Further, the district court did not abuse its discretion in awarding attorney to two of the prospective buyers.