Texas Causes of Action & Affirmative Defenses

Texas Causes of Action & Affirmative Defenses

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Monday, June 13, 2011

Money Had and Received (MHnR) Theory of Recovery for Debt


MONEY HAD AND RECEIVED

Alternative theory for a debt suit when there is no contract or no prove of it

   
To recover on a claim for money had and received, a plaintiff must show that the defendant holds money that in equity and good conscience belongs to him. Staats v. Miller, 243 S.W.2d 686, 687 (Tex. 1951); Edwards v. Mid-Continent Office Distribs., L.P., 252 S.W.3d 833, 837 (Tex. App.-Dallas 2008, pet. denied).

A cause of action for money had and received is not based on wrongdoing, but, instead, "looks only to the justice of the case and inquires whether the defendant has received money which rightfully belongs to another." Everett v. TK-Taito, L.L.C., 178 S.W.3d 844, 860 (Tex. App.-Fort Worth 2005, no pet.); Amoco Prod. Co. v. Smith, 946 S.W.2d 162, 164 (Tex. App.-El Paso 1997, no writ). In short, it is an equitable doctrine applied to prevent unjust enrichment. Hunt v. Baldwin, 68 S.W.3d 117, 132 (Tex. App.-Houston [14th Dist.] 2001, no pet.); Phippen v. Deere & Co., 965 S.W.2d 713, 725 (Tex. App.-Texarkana 1998, no pet.).

In defending against such a claim, a defendant may present any facts and raise any defenses that would deny the claimant's right or show that the claimant should not recover. Best Buy Co. v. Barrera, 248 S.W.3d 160, 162 (Tex. 2007).

SOURCE: Dallas Court of Appeals - 05-09-01397-CV- 4/22/11

MONEY-HAD-AND-RECEIVED CASELAW CLIP(S) AND CITES FROM OTHER COURTS OF APPEALS

"An action for money had and received is an equitable doctrine that courts apply to prevent unjust enrichment." London v. London, 192 S.W.3d 6, 13 (Tex. App.-Houston [14th Dist.] 2005, pet. denied) (citing Miller-Rogaska, Inc. v. Bank One, 931 S.W.2d 655, 662 (Tex. App.-Dallas 1996, no writ). "The cause of action is not premised on wrongdoing, but looks to the justice of the case and inquires whether the party has received money that rightfully belongs to another." Id. (citing Amoco Prod. Co. v. Smith, 946 S.W.2d 162, 164 (Tex. App.-El Paso 1997, no writ). The question in an action for money had and received is to which party does the money, in equity and law, belong. Id. (citing Staats v. Miller, 150 Tex. 581, 243 S.W.2d 686, 687 (1951); Tri-State Chems., Inc. v. W. Organics, Inc., 83 S.W.3d 189, 194-95 (Tex. App.-Amarillo 2002, pet. denied)).
ALTERNATIVE CAUSES OF ACTION ON DEBT: breach of contract, credit card agreement or promissory note; open account, account stated, sworn account under TRCP 185, common law debt claim, suit on account

DISTINGUISH FROM: civil cause of action for theft, misappropriation, and conversion 

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