Civil Procedure II, Pages 672–673

Aetna Casualty & Surety Co. v. Cunningham

United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, 1955

Facts:

Plaintiff insured a contractor against incompletion of the project. The contractor failed to complete the contract, plaintiff funded another contractor, and plaintiff then sued the contractor to recover the $32,000 paid to the replacement contractor based on the contract providing for recovery and for fraud.

Procedural History:

The district court found for plaintiff on the contract claim but not on fraud. Both parties appealed.

Issue:

Can a party appeal only seeking relief on different grounds?

Reasoning:

Since bankruptcies can discharge a straight contract judgment but not some fraud liabilities, plaintiff would be aggrieved if it was denied this judgment.

Rule/Holding:

When the denial of one claim results in the plaintiff not getting the relief it claims to be entitled to, it has a right to be heard on appeal.

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