MORITZ - > 980 S.W.2d 849 Court of Appeals of Texas San...

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> 980 S.W.2d 849 Court of Appeals of Texas, San Antonio. Jay F. MORITZ, Cheryl L. Van Cleave, Ron Mitchell Levine, Will Cabler, Anita Gonzalez, Jesus Mendoza, Felipe Calzada, Lauro Montalvo, Ronald Bruner, Michael Ludwig, Simon Rubinsky, Rudolfo Casias, Luis Camilli, and Allicia Euresti Holloway, Appellants, v. Clifford BUECHE and Mary Bueche, Appellees. No. 04-98-00350-CV. Oct. 7, 1998. Former students of defunct law school brought common law fraud and Deceptive Trade Practices Act (DTPA) claims against father of law school manager. The 225th Judicial District Court, Bexar County, Solomon Casseb, Jr., J., granted summary judgment for father. Former students appealed. The Court of Appeals, Hardberger, C.J., held that: (1) former students presented some evidence of father's fraud, and thus, father was not entitled to no-evidence summary judgment as to common law fraud claims; (2) former students presented some evidence that they were "consumers," within meaning of DTPA; and (3) statute of frauds defense did not apply to the former students' common law fraud and DTPA claims. Reversed and remanded. OPINION HARDBERGER, Chief Justice. NATURE OF THE CASE Appellants, who are fourteen former students of the now-defunct San Antonio School of Law (the "Students"), appeal an order granting summary judgment in favor of appellee, Clifford Bueche ("Bueche"). > 1 The motion was brought, in part, under > rule 166a(i) of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure. We hold that the Students pointed out evidence in their response that raised a genuine issue of material fact on the elements of their claims challenged in the summary judgment motion. We reverse the trial court's judgment. FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY In 1993, the Students enrolled in the newly formed San Antonio School of Law, allegedly managed by Ken Bueche and his wife, Joan. Clifford Bueche is Ken Bueche's father. According to their pleadings, the Students were told at enrollment that the school would qualify them to take the Texas Bar Examination and that, within a year, the school would be qualified to award a juris doctor (J.D.) degree. The Students charge that Ken, Joan, and Bueche represented that lawbooks had or would be purchased, that the Bueche family would erect a building to house classrooms, and that professional faculty and a full-time dean would be hired. Initially, the Students raised negligence, gross negligence, estoppel, and breach of contract claims, as well as DTPA and fraud claims. The case was eventually narrowed to the DTPA and fraud causes of action. In his Second Amended Original Answer, Bueche made a general denial of all claims against him and raised several affirmative defenses: failure of consideration, statute of frauds, and the statute of limitations on punitive damages. Bueche also filed a motion for summary judgment, arguing that the Students failed to establish that Bueche had made any misrepresentations regarding the management or financing of the school. Bueche also argued that the Students had not established their status as consumers under the DTPA.
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