Pollard v. Browder, 1869

Decision Date01 February 1961
Docket NumberNo. 1869,1869
Citation126 So.2d 310
CourtFlorida District Court of Appeals
PartiesFrank POLLARD, Appellant, v. David BROWDER and Henry Browder, a partnership, doing business as D. H. Browder and Sons & Co., Appellees.

L. Grady Burton and John W. Burton, Wauchula, for appellant.

Lewis E. Purvis, Arcadia, for appellees.

SHANNON, Judge.

In the proceedings below, Frank Pollard brought suit in equity alleging partnership and joint venture and seeking an accounting. The chancellor heard the case on the amended complaint, the answer and the testimony of several witnesses and then ordered the complaint dismissed; whereupon, Frank Pollard took this appeal.

The defendants operated a partnership in the business of packing and shipping citrus products. In 1943 it seemed likely that one of the two partners, David Browder, would be drafted into the armed services and that the firm would need to have another citrus buyer. With that in mind, they contacted Frank Pollard and offered to hire him for $35 a week. This offer was declined, and after some discussion, a proposal to split profits and losses one-third to each was also declined. The parties finally agreed upon an arrangement whereby Pollard would receive 25% on all early and midseason citrus profits and 12 1/2% on all Valencias. This agreement was entirely oral and it remained unchanged from s943 to 1955. Under this arrangement the plaintiff was to contribute his services and experience, and the defendants were to supply the money, the equipment, and the management. In addition, Pollard was allowed o draw advances in cash.

At the close of the first year the defendants' bookkeeper gave the plaintiff a statement of settlement and explained whatever figures the plaintiff asked about. The defendants' bookkeeper testified that Pollard was given another statement at the end of the second season. Certainly, if the plaintiff did not understand any of the figures, he could have complained to the partnership or he could have obtained all necessary information from the defendants' bookkeeper. Although the plaintiff worked under this oral contract from 1943 until 1955, on only one occasion did he raise any question about the various items which went to make up the settlement. That was in 1949, when he questioned a portion of a citrus crop and the bookkeeper was instructed by one of the partners to strike this item from the plaintiff's account. At this time, the plaintiff's total earnings were far short of the amounts he had drawn on his allowance and he owed the defendants between ten and twelve thousand dollars. This was covered by a life insurance policy payable to the defendants, for which the defendants paid the premium. In 1955 Pollard's association with the defendants was terminated and he received a final statement of account. Pollard refused to accept this statement as correct and, eventually, this suit resulted.

Succinctly stated, the contentions of the plaintiff below were: that the relationship between the parties was a joint venture; that by reason of a fiduciary relationship the plaintiff was entitled to an accounting; that equity had jurisdiction; and that the doctrine of acquiescence should not operate to bar an accounting. The chancellor ruled against the plaintiff, finding that the relationship between the parties was one of employer-employee and that the plaintiff's remedy at law was adequate. The chancellor's findings of fact are set out in his final decree, and read, in part, as follows:

'3. (a) That prior to the 1943-44 citrus fruit season the plaintiff and the defendants entered into a contract establishing an employer-employee relationship, the terms of which did not set forth clearly, concisely, and in...

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6 cases
  • Frazell v. United States
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Western District of Louisiana
    • 31 Enero 1963
    ...to be assumed by one or more of the partners exclusively. Sheridan v. LeQuire, 15 So.2d 118 (La.App., 1st Cir., 1943); Pollard v. Browder, 126 So.2d 310 (Fla.App., 1961); and O'Neal, An Appraisal of the Louisiana Law of Partnership, 9 La.L. Rev. 307, 321 (1949). Likewise, the parties may ag......
  • Austin v. Duval County School Bd.
    • United States
    • Florida District Court of Appeals
    • 13 Julio 1995
    ...1196 (Fla.1982); Brown v. Snellgrove, 503 So.2d 447, 448 (Fla. 2d DCA), review denied, 511 So.2d 998 (Fla.1987); Pollard v. Browder, 126 So.2d 310, 312 (Fla. 2d DCA 1961). Application of the first joint venture element to the instant case reveals that the City and the School Board shared a ......
  • Brendel v. Meyrowitz
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Northern District of Texas
    • 25 Enero 2016
    ...this would not necessarily make the contract unenforceable as a non-joint venture contract. See, e.g., Pollard v. Browder, 126 So.2d 310, 311-12 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 1961) (holding that contract did not create joint venture because it lacked some essential elements of joint venture; rather,......
  • Phillips v. U.S. Fidelity & Guaranty Co.
    • United States
    • Florida District Court of Appeals
    • 12 Julio 1963
    ...law, and the intention of the parties gathered therefrom.' Also, this Court, in speaking through Judge Shannon, in the case of Pollard v. Browder, 126 So.2d 310, 'The requirements of a joint venture have been set forth several times. As Justice Drew stated in Kislak v. Kreedian, Fla., 95 So......
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