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Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS:Michael Barkhausen was married to Pamela Barkhausen when she worked for Craycom Inc. During that time, Pamela entered into an oral agreement to purchase 6.75 shares of Craycom common stock for $27,000. Pamela and Michael subsequently divorced. Pursuant to the divorce decree, Michael gained all contractual right, title and interest to the Craycom investment. Craycom tendered the stock to Michael on the same day he filed a suit against Craycom and its president and vice-president, Sharon and Anthony Matera (collectively, Craycom) alleging that Craycom failed to timely issue him the shares of stock. After holding a bench trial, granting a new trial, and then holding a second trial, the trial court entered judgment in favor of Craycom and awarded it $30,000 in attorney’s fees as a sanction. HOLDING:The court modifies the judgment to delete the sanctions award and affirms the judgment of the trial court as modified. At issue on appeal is whether the trial court abused its discretion in 1. denying Michael a jury for the second trial, and 2. awarding fees as a sanction. The court concludes that the trial court did not abuse its discretion in denying Michael’s jury demand. The court notes that he did not request a jury in his first trial. He chose to request a jury for his new trial, presumably because the trial court had ruled against him in the first trial. The court emphasizes that Michael never moved, either formally or informally, for a continuance of his second trial that could have allowed the jury demand to become timely. Second, the court points out that the trial court properly refused the request due to its concerns regarding the extra expense that both parties would incur and the length of the trial. The court next addresses Michael’s challenge to the trial court’s attorney’s fees award, which was made under Chapters 9 and 10 of Texas Civil Practice & Remedies Code, Texas Rule of Civil Procedure 13, Deceptive Trade Practices Act 17.50(c) and the trial court’s inherent power. The court notes that the trial court’s findings of fact and conclusions of law provide that 1. Michael’s suit was not warranted by a good faith argument for the extension, modification or reversal of existing law; 2. Michael brought this suit for the purpose of harassing and intimidating Craycom so that it would agree to rescind the agreement and deliver to him the $27,000 consideration given to Craycom by Pamela; and 3. Michael was not entitled to recover under any claim or cause of action asserted, and based upon the facts known to him or which should have been known to him at the time he filed his suit, he knew or should have known that he had no good faith basis to assert that he had any right to recover under any claim or cause of action asserted. But, the court finds, with respect to the second finding, the trial court did not articulate specific facts demonstrating that the suit was part of a pattern of harassment or intimidation, and Craycom presented no argument to the trial court setting forth an evidentiary basis for it from the evidence presented at the trial on the merits. Nor did the trial court hear evidence about Michael’s lack of a good-faith basis for filing the suit, at the time it was filed, based upon what he should have known, to support the trial court’s general findings. The court finds that Craycom failed to present any evidence at trial to support its contention that Michael brought this suit in bad faith motivated by a malicious or discriminatory purpose or for harassment purposes. Also, although Michael received notice of Craycom’s counterclaim for attorney’s fees under DTPA 17.50(c), the court notes that the pleadings do not tell of the basis on which the trial court may have relied to impose sanctions. The court concludes that the trial court abused its discretion in failing to particularize the conduct it found warranted sanctions. Consequently, the court holds that the trial court abused its discretion in awarding Craycom $30,000 in sanctions, because the trial court did not particularize the conduct justifying sanctions, and the evidence in the record does not support the imposition of sanctions. The court modifies the judgment to delete the sanctions award and affirms the judgment of the trial court as modified. OPINION:Bland, J.; Nuchia, Keyes, and Bland, JJ.

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