Court of Appeals of Texas, Third District, Austin
Edison Cement Corp. d/b/a Edison Furniture Co., Appellant
North Carolina Furniture Direct 1, Ltd. d/b/a North Carolina Furniture Direct; and North Carolina Furniture Direct, Ltd. Co., Appellees
THE DISTRICT COURT OF HAYS COUNTY, 274TH JUDICIAL DISTRICT
NO. 15-2305, HONORABLE WILLIAM R. HENRY, JUDGE PRESIDING
Chief Justice Rose, Justices Pemberton and Shannon [*]
an appeal from the denial, in part, of a temporary injunction
rendered by the district court of Hays County in a
breach-of-contract case. Appellant is Edison Cement Corp.
d/b/a Edison Furniture Co. (Edison). Appellees are North
Carolina Furniture Direct 1, Ltd. d/b/a North Carolina
Furniture Direct; and North Carolina Furniture Direct, Ltd.
Co. (Carolina). The district court granted Edison's
requested temporary injunctive relief in three categories,
but denied its requested mandatory injunctive relief. This
Court will affirm the judgment, denying the requested
Carolina and Edison sell furniture. Carolina sells discounted
furniture to customers in a consignment-type arrangement. It
does not buy and then resell the furniture directly, but
rather it provides the showroom, warehouse, technology, and
other support necessary to sell furniture. "Consultants,
" like Edison, provide the furniture and salesclerks.
parties began doing business together in 2013. Their
relationship is memorialized in two contracts. Carolina owns
and operates a showroom where furniture is sold to the public
and a warehouse where furniture is stored when it is not in
the showroom. Both the showroom and the warehouse are located
in the same building in San Marcos. By the contract, Edison
agreed to provide the furniture to be sold in the showroom in
exchange for reimbursement of the purchase price of the
furniture plus a commission. Edison collects the furniture
sales proceeds and pays Carolina the balance weekly after
costs and commission.
parties agreed that some of the furniture could be stored in
the warehouse. Such furniture is placed on pallets stacked to
the ceiling of the warehouse and can only be accessed by
lifts operated by Carolina employees trained in the operation
of the lifts. No Edison employee is so trained.
fall of 2015, Carolina notified Edison that it intended to
terminate the parties' relationship when the contract
expired at the end of the year. Edison, in turn, informed
Carolina that the contract would terminate in late October
2015. As the parties began to wind down their business, a
dispute arose regarding payments that Carolina claimed it was
owed. During this period Edison agreed to pay Carolina $17,
000 by check in exchange for a truckload of furniture from
the warehouse. As pleaded by Carolina's trial lawyer, no
sooner had the loaded truck "hit the road" than
Edison stopped payment on the check. Carolina, thereafter,
notified Edison that their "Agreement is hereby
immediately and entirely terminated" and that Edison
employees are no longer "welcome" at the warehouse
suit, Edison sought monetary damages as well as temporary
injunctive relief. After hearing, the district court granted
Edison the following relief by temporarily enjoining Carolina
from (1) "hiding, selling, removing, destroying or
damaging" the consigned furniture; (2) delivering the
consigned furniture to third parties; and (3) removing the
consigned furniture from the warehouse. The court also
enjoined both Edison and Carolina from removing any consigned
furniture from the warehouse. The district court, however,
refused Edison's further request for relief authorizing
it to enter the warehouse and remove consigned furniture.
Issue One, Edison complains of the district court's
refusal to authorize it to enter into the warehouse to remove
consigned furniture. Edison's requested relief would have
entailed the employment of Carolina's equipment and the
assistance of its trained workmen to take down the
court has broad discretion in determining whether to grant or
deny an application for a temporary injunction. Butnaru
v. Ford Motor Co., 84 S.W.3d 198, 204 (Tex. 2002). A
reviewing court may not substitute its judgment for that of
the trial court; rather it should sustain the trial
court's denial of injunctive relief unless such denial
was so arbitrary that it exceeded the bounds of reasonable
discretion. Id. In reviewing the trial court's
exercise of discretion, the reviewing court considers the
evidence in the light most favorable to the trial court's
determination and indulges every inference in its support.
Universal Health Servs., Inc. v. Thompson, 24 S.W.3d
570, 576 (Tex. App.-Austin 2000, no pet.).
obtain a temporary injunction, the applicant must prove three
elements: (1) a cause of action against the defendant, (2) a
probable right to the relief sought upon a final hearing on
the merits, and (3) a probable, imminent, and irreparable
injury in the interim. Butnaru, 84 S.W.3d at 204.
argues in defense of the judgment that Edison failed to
establish that it would suffer a probable, imminent, and
irreparable injury if the requested temporary injunctive
relief were not granted.
principal witness was its sales manager, William Cannon.
Cannon testified that quantities of furniture were missing
from the warehouse. He also claimed that some of the
furniture was damaged and that more pieces might be damaged.
He asserted further that if Edison did not have the
furniture, it would miss out on a "once in a lifetime
opportunity" at a coming up grand-opening sale. Cannon
expressed concern that Edison could go out of business if it
did not obtain the furniture. Finally, Cannon ...