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Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS:In August 2000, Wichita County contracted with Bobby Elledge to improve waterline service to its rural residents, including members of Friberg-Cooper Water Supply Corp. Although the contract required Elledge to provide his own insurance and equipment, he nevertheless submitted invoices for these items to Friberg-Cooper, which promptly and voluntarily paid them despite not being a party to the contract. On Aug. 30, 2004, more than two years but less than four years after the final invoice payment, Friberg-Cooper sued Elledge, seeking restitution under an unjust enrichment theory. The trial court granted Elledge summary judgment, ruling that the claim was barred under Texas Civil Practice & Remedies Code �16.003(a) by the two-year statute of limitations applicable to suits for “conversion of personal property” or “taking or detaining the personal property of another.” A divided 2nd Court of Appeals reversed, holding that unjust enrichment claims are instead governed by the four-year limitations period applicable to suits on “debt.” The 2nd Court dismissed as dicta the Texas Supreme Court’s two earlier decisions stating that the two-year limitations period applies to unjust enrichment claims. HOLDING:Reversed and rendered. The court stated that it had twice “indicated” in earlier cases that unjust enrichment claims fall under �16.003. Even without the benefit of its prior decisions, the court stated that it would conclude that unjust enrichment claims should fall under the two-year statute. The most logical reading of ��16.003 and 16.004 is to treat “debt” actions under �16.004 as breach-of-contract actions that fall under the four-year statute of limitations for such claims, while construing the two-year statute’s reference to actions for “taking or detaining the personal property of another” as applicable to extra-contractual actions for unjust enrichment. In order to bring unequivocal “predictability and consistency to the jurisprudence,” the court declared categorically that “[u]njust enrichment claims are governed by the two-year statute of limitations in section 16.003 of the Civil Practice and Remedies Code.” Accordingly, the court held that Friberg-Cooper’s claims were time-barred under the applicable two-year limitations period. OPINION:Per curiam.

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