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GARY FRIEDMAN AND SHARON FRIEDMAN v. BONNIE LUBECKI (04/24/87)

filed: April 24, 1987.

GARY FRIEDMAN AND SHARON FRIEDMAN, HIS WIFE, APPELLANTS,
v.
BONNIE LUBECKI, I/T/A WHITESTOWN FARMS, A SOLE PROPRIETORSHIP



Appeal from the Judgment of the Court of Common Pleas, Butler County, Civil Division, at No. A.D. No. 85-774, Book 127 Page 251.

COUNSEL

Bradley S. Gelder, Pittsburgh, for appellants.

Brosky, Del Sole and Cercone, JJ.

Author: Brosky

[ 362 Pa. Super. Page 500]

This is an appeal from a judgment entered on an order denying appellants' Petition to reinstate their appeal after entry of a rule to show cause upon appellee why their appeal from a judgment entered against them by a District Justice should not be stricken for failure to file their complaint timely.

The issue presented in this appeal is whether the delay in filing the complaint, occasioned by late notice of the judgment by the District Justice 24 days after entry of judgment

[ 362 Pa. Super. Page 501]

    and a limited work schedule in appellants' counsel's office due to the Christmas holidays, constitutes good cause to require reinstatement of the appeal. For reasons appearing below, we reverse and remand.

On November 18, 1985, judgment was entered by the District Justice for appellee, a boarder, seller and buyer of horses. On December 12, 1985, 24 days after entry of judgment, the District Justice notified appellants of the judgment entered against them.*fn1 The following day, December 13, 1985, and well within the 30-day period prescribed by Pa.R.C.P.D.J. 1002, appellants perfected an appeal from the said judgment to the Court of Common Pleas of Butler County, Pennsylvania.

Subsequently, on January 6, 1986, appellants filed their Complaint against appellee alleging specific damage in the amount of $55,000, the purchase price of two Arabian fillies, plus interest, as well as damages for the expenses of boarding and caring for the horses and in pursuing the litigation.*fn2 The complaint alleged breach of an oral contract to resell two Polish Arabian fillies which appellants had purchased from a third party for $55,000.

On January 10, 1986, in accordance with Pa.R.C.P.D.J. 1006 but four days after appellants had filed their Complaint, appellee praeciped to strike appellants' appeal from the judgment of the District Justice for failure of appellants to file their Complaint against appellee within 20 days of the filing of their notice of appeal from the said judgment pursuant to Pa.R.C.P.D.J. 1004 A. As provided by Pa.R.C.P.D.J. 1006, appellants, on February 7, 1986, filed a Petition to reinstate their appeal alleging, as the sole reason for good cause to allow reinstatement, that the shortened holiday work period prevented the timely preparation and filing

[ 362 Pa. Super. Page 502]

    of their Complaint with the Prothonotary of the Butler County Common Pleas Court.*fn3 The Petition was denied on June 3, 1986, and judgment was entered pursuant to Pa.R.App.P. ...


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