Court of Appeals of Texas, Thirteenth District, Corpus Christi-Edinburg
appeal from the 404th District Court of Cameron County,
Chief Justice Contreras and Justices Hinojosa and Tijerina
LETICIA HINOJOSA Justice
interlocutory appeal, appellant Jaycap Financial Ltd.
challenges the trial court's temporary injunction.
See Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code Ann. §
51.014(a)(4). By four issues, appellant contends that the
trial court's injunction is improper and requests that we
dissolve it. We reverse and remand.
Alfred Neustaedter secured a loan from appellant for $4.3
million to purchase property in Canada. Appellee defaulted on
the loan. Appellant sued appellee in Canada, and the Canadian
court awarded appellant $4, 416, 578.60 plus interest
"accruing at 17.5% per annum from December 18, 2013 to
the date of judgment."Appellant foreclosed on the
Canadian property and sold it to satisfy the debt. Appellant
received $5, 833, 186.36 in net sale proceeds after all taxes
January 25, 2017, appellant filed the Canadian judgment in
the trial court in Cameron County. On January 30, 2017,
appellant filed a notice of filing pursuant to the Uniform
Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act. See id. §
36A.004. Appellant sent notice that it had filed the foreign
judgment in the trial court to appellee's address in
Texas and in Canada, and appellee signed that he received the
notices on February 7, 2017 and February 23, 2017,
respectively. On June 20, 2017, the Cameron County District
Clerk issued a writ of execution for the sale of property
owned by appellee in Laguna Vista, Texas (the Cameron County
31, 2017, appellee filed a motion for "emergency"
injunction and damages claiming that appellant was
"attempting to sell [the Cameron County property],
without appropriate notice, by fraud, or with no right to
sell or dispose of such property." Appellee sought a
trial on the merits of his claims and temporary injunctive
relief to preserve the status quo during the pendency of the
case. On July 31, 2017, the trial court issued a temporary
restraining order preventing appellant from selling
appellee's Cameron County property.
August 11, 2017, appellant filed a "Motion to Overrule
Debtor's Challenges to the Judgment" and plea to the
jurisdiction seeking dismissal of appellee's claims for
various reasons. The trial court held a hearing on
appellant's motions and appellee's motion for
temporary injunction on August 14, 2017. At the hearing,
evidence was presented that appellant was now seeking payment
on the interest it alleges appellee owed as payment on the
principal amount, which had been satisfied when appellant
sold the Canadian property. Appellant argued that appellee
was required to pay 17.5% interest on the $4.4 million
judgment for two years. Appellee countered that the judgment
only stated that he was required to pay 17.5% interest per
annum from December 18, 2013 to the date of judgment. The
trial court denied appellant's motions, and on November
27, 2017, the trial court signed a temporary injunction
enjoining appellant "from proceeding with any execution
of [the Cameron County property]." This appeal followed.
first three issues, appellant claims the temporary injunction
should be dissolved because the trial court lacked
Standard of Review
matter jurisdiction is essential to the authority of a court
to decide a case." Tex. Ass'n of Bus. v. Tex.
Air Control Bd., 852 S.W.2d 440, 443 (Tex. 1993). It is
never presumed and cannot be waived. Id. at 443-44.
An appellate court is obligated, even sua sponte, to
determine the threshold question of jurisdiction. See
Hayes v. State, 518 S.W.3d 585, 588 (Tex. App.-Tyler
2017, no pet.); Walker Sand, Inc. v. Baytown Asphalt
Materials, Ltd., 95 S.W.3d 511, 514 (Tex. App.-Houston
[1st Dist.] 2002, no pet.). The existence of subject matter
jurisdiction is a question of law that we review de novo.
Tex. Dep't of Parks & Wildlife v. Miranda,
133 S.W.3d 217, 226 (Tex. 2004).