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Java’s Motorcyle Repair, LLC v. Barth

Court of Appeals of Arkansas, Division I

December 11, 2019

JAVA’S MOTORCYLE REPAIR, LLC, Appellant
v.
Gary BARTH, Appellee

Page 226

          APPEAL FROM THE GARLAND COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT [NO. 26CV-18-1288], HONORABLE LYNN WILLIAMS, JUDGE.

         The Applegate Firm, PLLC, Maumelle, by: Ryan J. Applegate, for appellant.

         Jonathan D. Jones, for appellee.

         OPINION

         RAYMOND R. ABRAMSON, Judge

          Java’s Motorcycle Repair, LLC (Java), appeals the Garland County Circuit Court order dismissing its appeal of the judgment entered in favor of Gary Barth by the Garland County District Court. On appeal, Java argues that the circuit court erred in finding that it untimely appealed the judgment. We agree and reverse and remand.

Page 227

          On December 4, 2017, Barth filed a complaint against Java in the Garland County District Court alleging that Java had negligently repaired his motorcycle. On April 27, 2018, the district court held a trial and took the matter under advisement.

          On June 28, the district court sent an email to the parties. The email states in part as follows:

Based upon the pleadings, testimony, and other evidence presented, I find that Plaintiff Gary Barth is entitled to judgment in his favor and an award of damages in the amount $3,310.99, plus court costs.

          The email was not filed in the district court docket. On June 29, the following entry was made in the district court docket:

CLERK NOTE - PER EMAIL FROM JUDGE SWITZER - DECISION IN FAVOR OF PLAINTIFF - ATTY JONES TO PREPARE PRECEDENT FOR JUDGE TO SIGN

          On August 1, the district court entered a written judgment against Java on the docket and awarded Barth $3,310 and court costs. On August 10, Java filed a notice of appeal in the district court, and on August 17, Java filed a certified copy of the district court docket sheet with the circuit court clerk.

          On September 14, Barth filed a motion to dismiss the appeal in the circuit court and asserted that Java had untimely appealed to circuit court. Specifically, Barth argued that Java had filed its appeal more than thirty days after the June 29 docket entry awarding judgment to Barth. Java responded that its appeal time did not begin to run on June 29 because the judgment amount was not docketed on that date. On October ...


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