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HODGE v. ME-BEE CO. (04/16/68)

decided: April 16, 1968.

HODGE, APPELLANT,
v.
ME-BEE CO., INC. HODGE V. ME-BEE CO., INC., APPELLANT



Appeals from orders of Court of Common Pleas of Delaware County, No. 9018 of 1965, in case of Samuel Hodge v. Me-Bee Co., Inc. and Me-Dee Co., Inc.

COUNSEL

Nicholas G. Petrella, for plaintiff.

William R. Deasey, with him Kelly, Deasey & Scanlan, for defendants.

Bell, C. J., Musmanno, Jones, Cohen, Eagen, O'Brien and Roberts, JJ. Opinion by Mr. Justice Roberts.

Author: Roberts

[ 429 Pa. Page 586]

The cross appeals which this Court is today called upon to decide arise from the following transaction. Samuel Hodge and four medical doctors are the sole stockholders of the Me-Dee Company, which in turn owns all the stock of Me-Bee Company. Both corporations were formed for the purpose of erecting, operating and occupying a medical building in which the four doctors would conduct their respective medical practices. Hodge's exact stake in this venture has never been made completely clear, although it appears that certain tax advantages befell him as a result of his participation.

[ 429 Pa. Page 587]

Between June 1958 and July 1962 Hodge loaned various sums of money to Me-Bee, totaling $20,528.71, with the oral understanding that this money would be repaid when the defendant corporations realized a net profit. In his complaint Hodge alleged that he had repeatedly demanded the re-payment of his loans, but that defendants have refused. Hodge thus prayed that the court enter judgment "against defendants Me-Dee Company, Incorporated and Me-Bee Company, Incorporated jointly and severally with interest." Defendants, in their answer, admitted every allegation in plaintiff's complaint, but asserted, as new matter, the fact that no payment was yet due because no net profit had been realized by defendants. On this issue alone the parties went to trial.

Trial was held before a judge sitting without a jury on June 15, 1966. On June 27, 1966 the court entered a verdict for plaintiff Hodge in the amount of $20,528.71 with interest. Defendants filed exceptions which were subsequently denied by the court en banc on January 26, 1967. Accordingly, Hodge computed the interest due, and on March 2, 1967 assessed damages of $26,346.56. On March 8, 1967 defendants filed their appeal which appears on our docket as No. 1, January Term, 1968. Subsequent to the filing of this appeal, but prior to its perfection, the trial judge issued an order clarifying his original verdict. This order recited that the interest awarded shall run only from the date of trial, i.e., June 27, 1966. From this order plaintiff Hodge has appealed, his action appearing on our docket as No. 19, January Term, 1968.

Me-Bee and Me-Dee Appeal, No. 1

Appellee Hodge filed a motion to quash this appeal, and we ordered that this motion be argued at the time of oral argument before us. Having now heard argument,

[ 429 Pa. Page 588]

    this Court is of the opinion that appeal No. ...


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