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2009-UP-347 - Rea Contracting v. Douglas Smith Backhoe

THIS OPINION HAS NO PRECEDENTIAL VALUE.  IT SHOULD NOT BE CITED OR RELIED ON AS PRECEDENT IN ANY PROCEEDING EXCEPT AS PROVIDED BY RULE 268(d)(2), SCACR.

THE STATE OF SOUTH CAROLINA
In The Court of Appeals

Rea Contracting, L.L.C., a North Carolina Limited Liability Company, Respondent,

v.

Douglas Smith Backhoe and Excavating, Inc., a South Carolina Corporation, and Douglas Smith Individually, Appellant.


Appeal From York County
S. Jackson Kimball, III, Master-In-Equity


Unpublished Opinion No. 2009-UP-347
Submitted June 1, 2009 – Filed June 23, 2009   


AFFIRMED


Daniel Dominic D'Agostino, of York, for Appellant.

David B. Sample, of Rock Hill, for Respondent.

PER CURIAM:  Douglas Smith Backhoe and Excavation (Backhoe) appeals the decisions of the master-in-equity that (1) granted Rea Contracting attorney's fees and prejudgment interest; (2) failed to award Backhoe attorney's fees and costs pursuant to Rule 11, SCRCP, and section 15-36-10 of the South Carolina Code (Supp. 2008); and (3) dismissed without prejudice Rea Contracting's request to pierce the corporate veil.  We affirm pursuant to Rule 220(b) and the following authorities:

1.  As to whether the master erred in awarding Rea Contracting attorney's fees and prejudgment interest: Rule 54(c), SCRCP ("Except as to a party against whom a judgment is entered by default, every final judgment shall grant the relief to which the party in whose favor it is rendered is entitled, even if the party has not demanded such relief in his pleadings."); Battery Homeowners Ass'n v. Lincoln Fin. Res., 309 S.C. 247, 422 S.E.2d 93 (1992) (holding trial court properly awarded attorney's fees and penalties when plaintiff sought neither in its complaint but an agreement between the parties provided for such relief).

2.  As to whether the master erred in failing to award Backhoe attorney's fees and costs under Rule 11, SCRCP, and section 15-36-10:  Russell v. Wachovia Bank, 370 S.C. 5, 19, 633 S.E.2d 722, 729 (2006) (stating an abuse of discretion may be found when the conclusions reached by the court are without reasonable factual support); Rutland v. Holler, Dennis, Corbett, Ormond & Garner, 371 S.C. 91, 97, 637 S.E.2d 316, 319 (Ct. App. 2006) (instructing an appellate court may take its own view of the evidence then apply an abuse of discretion standard in reviewing the trial court's decision to award sanctions).

3.  As to whether the master erred in dismissing without prejudice Rea Contracting's request to pierce the corporate veil: Staubes v. City of Folly Beach, 339 S.C. 406, 412, 529 S.E.2d 543, 546 (2000) ("It is well-settled that an issue cannot be raised for the first time on appeal, but must have been raised to and ruled upon by the trial court to be preserved for appellate review.").

AFFIRMED.[1]

HUFF, PIEPER, and GEATHERS, JJ., concur.


[1] We decide this case without oral argument pursuant to Rule 215, SCACR.