Assoc. Unit Owners of Timbercrest Condo v. WarrenAnnotate this Case
In this construction defect case, defendant moved for summary judgment, and the trial court granted the motion. Plaintiff then filed a "motion for reconsideration" of the summary judgment ruling. The court meanwhile entered judgment, and plaintiff filed a notice of appeal. When the trial court later denied the motion for reconsideration, plaintiff did not file a new notice of appeal. The question in this case was whether plaintiff needed to do so. Defendant argued that, because a motion for reconsideration constitutes a motion for new trial, its filing rendered plaintiff's earlier notice of appeal premature and, as a consequence, a nullity. Plaintiff argued that the motion for reconsideration did not constitute a motion for a new trial and thus had no effect on the filing of the notice of appeal. The Court of Appeals concluded that, under "Carter v. U.S. National Bank," (747 P2d 980 (1987)), a motion for reconsideration constitutes a motion for a new trial. Nevertheless, the court held that the filing of the motion did not have the effect of rendering the appeal a nullity. Consequently, the court concluded that plaintiff was not required to file a new notice of appeal. Upon review, the Supreme Court held that "Carter" and earlier decisions declaring that a motion for reconsideration of a summary judgment constitutes a motion for a new trial were incorrectly decided. In this case, plaintiff's filing of the motion for reconsideration of the summary judgment did not render the filing of the notice of appeal premature. Accordingly, the Court affirmed the decision of the Court of Appeals on different grounds.