Peddler, Inc. v. Rikard, 20141

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
Citation266 S.C. 28,221 S.E.2d 115
Decision Date31 December 1975
Docket NumberNo. 20141,20141
PartiesThe PEDDLER, INC., Respondent, v. James C. RIKARD and Delora Y. Rikard, Appellants.

Gregory & Gregory, Lancaster, for appellants.

James L. D'Angelo, Myrtle Beach, for respondent.

MOSS, Acting Associate Justice:

It appears from the record that The Peddler, Inc., the respondent herein, sells franchises to persons desiring to operate restaurants to be known as 'The Peddler'. It also appears that restaurants operating under this name use the trademarks, trade names, emblems, insignias, services, and advertising of the respondent.

The respondent brought this action against James C. Rikard and Delora Y. Rikard, the appellants herein, alleging that they obtained a franchise from it to operate a 'Peddler' restaurant in Santee, South Carolina, and agreed to pay therefor a franchise fee of $5,000.00 and $150.00 per month as a royalty fee.

It is further alleged that the appellants opened a 'Peddler' restaurant in Santee, South Carolina, in January, 1972 and operated such under that trade name and franchise until March, 1973, without paying to the respondent the franchise fee of $5,000.00 and royalty fees amounting to $2,100.00. The respondent seeks judgment against the appellants for the franchise and royalty fees in the aggregate amount of $7,100.00.

The appellants, by their answer, deny that they entered into a franchise agreement with the respondent and contend that they do not owe the respondent any sum for either franchise or royalty fees.

This case was, by consent, referred to the Master in Equity for Horry County, to take the testimony and report his findings of fact and law. The Master took the testimony and filed his Report finding that the appellants purchased a franchise to operate a 'Peddler' restaurant at Santee, South Carolina, and agreed to pay therefor a franchise fee and monthly royalties in the amounts heretofore stated. He recommended judgment in favor of the respondent against the appellants in the amount of $7,550.00. The appellants excepted to this Report of the Master, and such was heard by the Judge of the Civil and Criminal Court of Horry County. The trial judge affirmed the findings of fact by the Master, but reduced the amount of recovery to $7,000.00. This appeal followed.

The appellants allege error on the part of the trial judge in affirming the Master's Report on the ground that the respondent failed to prove a contract by them with it; and more specifically, that there was no proof that Delora Y. Rikard was a party to such contract.

This case was one at law but was submitted to the Master by consent of the parties. While the findings of fact by the Master may be affirmed, modified or reversed by the trial judge, upon exceptions to the Report, this Court has no power to reverse the findings of fact by him if he had before him any evidence to support his findings. We can only review the facts to determine whether there was any evidence to sustain the findings made by the Master and the trial judge. Moore v. Crawley and Associates, Inc., 254 S.C. 170, 174 S.E.2d 340.

There is evidence that either in September of October, 1971, James C. Rikard telephoned J. P. Morgan, Jr., president of the respondent, and told him he wanted to open a 'Peddler' restaurant in Santee, South Carolina. Morgan testified that he agreed to sell a 'Peddler' franchise and James C. Rikard agreed to purchase such for a franchise fee of $5,000.00, and a royalty fee of $150.00 per month. Morgan told Rikard he would bring the written franchise agreement with him to the opening of the Santee restaurant. This agreement, signed by an officer of respondent was handed to James C. Rikard for his signature, but was not actually executed by him, on the day of the opening of the restaurant, because as he said, 'I haven't got time to sign these now because we're getting close to our opening party.' He did retain possession of the contract.

There is testimony that a sign in front of the restaurant read 'The Peddler Steak House'. The respondent furnished certain Peddler equipment for the restaurant. The respondent furnished all the beef used at the Santee Peddler restaurant. Morgan helped find...

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  • Dan Ryan Builders W. Va., LLC v. Main St. Am. Assurance Co., 2:18-cv-00589-DCN
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 4th Circuit. United States District Court of South Carolina
    • April 3, 2020
    ...by one who did not sign it." Coves Darden, LLC v. Ibanez, 2016 WL 4379419, at *9–10 (S.C. Ct. App. 2016) (quoting Peddler, Inc. v. Rikard, 266 S.C. 28, 221 S.E.2d 115, 117 (1975) ). While DRB is correct that a signature is not always required for a contract to be binding, in this instance t......
  • Dan Ryan Builders W. Va., LLC v. Main St. Am. Assurance Co., 2:18-cv-00589-DCN
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 4th Circuit. United States District Court of South Carolina
    • April 3, 2020
    ...by one who did not sign it." Coves Darden, LLC v. Ibanez, 2016 WL 4379419, at *9–10 (S.C. Ct. App. 2016) (quoting Peddler, Inc. v. Rikard, 266 S.C. 28, 221 S.E.2d 115, 117 (1975) ). While DRB is correct that a signature is not always required for a contract to be binding, in this instance t......
  • Wilson v. Willis, Appellate Case No. 2014–000946.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of South Carolina
    • March 2, 2016
    ...it may be sufficient[ ] if signed by one and 786 S.E.2d 579 accepted and acted on by the other.” Id.; see also Peddler, Inc. v. Rikard, 266 S.C. 28, 32, 221 S.E.2d 115, 117 (1975) (stating to give validity to a contract, it is not always necessary that it be signed by both parties, but rath......
  • Coves Darden LLC v. Ibanez, 2016-UP-402
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of South Carolina
    • August 17, 2016
    ...without being signed by both parties if the contract is accepted by the party who did not sign, see, e.g., Peddler, Inc. v. Rikard, 266 S.C. 28, 32, 221 S.E.2d 115, 117 (1975) ("It is not always necessary, in order to give validity to a contract, that it should be signed by both parties; it......
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