MICHELLE D. SNOUFFER Plaintiff-Appellee
JOSHUA P. SNOUFFER, et al. Defendants-Appellants
Appeal from the Court of Common Pleas, Case No. 14 CV 0153
Plaintiff-Appellee D. JOE GRIFFITH, DAGGER, JOHNSTON, MILLER,
OGILVIE & HAMPSON LLP.
Defendants-Appellants Sundays, BRIAN W. BENBOW, BENBOW LAW
JUDGES: Hon. Patricia A. Delaney, P. J. Hon. John W. Wise, J.
Hon. Earle E. Wise, Jr., J.
Appellants Terry and Brenda Sunday appeal two decisions of
the Court of Common Pleas, Morgan County, one granting
judgment in favor of Appellee Michelle D. Snouffer in a lease
dispute and the other subsequently denying their motion to
void or vacate the first judgment. The relevant procedural
facts leading to this appeal are as follows:
The present dispute centers on certain agreements pertaining
to a 181-acre farm located in York Township, Morgan County,
owned during the pertinent time frames by Appellee Michelle
D. Snouffer and Appellant Joshua P. Snouffer. In January 2013,
Michelle and Joshua entered into a "Cash Farm Lease
Agreement" with Appellants Terry and Brenda Sunday for
the aforesaid farm property. Said lease, by its terms, was to
terminate on January 1, 2014. However, in May 2013, just a
few months after the signing of the January 2013 agreement,
Terry purportedly approached Joshua with a proposed addendum
to the lease which in essence sought to extend the agreement
three additional "crop years, " i.e., into
early 2017. Joshua signed the addendum, but Michelle did not.
On September 12, 2014, Michelle filed a complaint against
Joshua, as well as Terry and Brenda Sunday, in the Morgan
County Court of Common Pleas, seeking inter alia a
declaratory judgment that the lease addendum was void and/or
On October 8, 2014, Joshua filed an answer to the complaint
and a cross-claim against Terry and Brenda. The gist of the
cross-claim was that he had been damaged by the alleged delay
of potential sales of the farm property and by the alleged
refusal of Terry and Brenda "to allow access to the
subject real estate for inspection for prospective
Michelle filed an amended complaint on November 4, 2014.
Terry and Brenda filed an answer to the amended complaint,
along with a cross-claim against Joshua and a counterclaim
against Michelle, on November 13, 2014. Terry and Brenda also
filed an answer to Joshua's cross-claim on November 13,
On November 19, 2014, Michelle filed a reply to the
counterclaim of Terry and Brenda.
On December 11, 2014, Joshua fax-filed an answer to the
cross-claim of Terry and Brenda.
On February 19, 2015, Michelle filed a motion for a temporary
restraining order ("TRO") and for a preliminary and
permanent injunction. Terry and Brenda filed a memorandum in
opposition to said motion on March 2, 2015. Michelle filed a
motion in reply on March 4, 2015.
In the meantime, on February 26, 2015, following leave from
the trial court, Michelle filed a second amended complaint.
Terry and Brenda filed an answer thereto on March 4, 2015.
On March 10, 2015, the trial court issued a temporary
restraining order ("TRO"), which prevented Terry
and Brenda from growing crops on the farm property. Terry and
Brenda apparently ...