United States District Court, D. Minnesota
L. Krenn, Esq. and Gray Plant Mooty, counsel for plaintiff.
R. Asmus, Esq. and Briggs & Morgan, counsel for
S. Doty, Judge United States District Court
matter is before the court upon the cross motions for summary
judgment by plaintiff Lemond Properties, LLC and defendant
Chart, Inc.. Based on a review of the file, record, and
proceedings herein, the court grants Lemond's motion and
denies Chart's motion.
contract dispute arises out of the parties' lease
agreement involving industrial property in Owatonna,
Minnesota. Under the agreement, Chart agreed to lease the
property from Lemond for manufacturing purposes. McGregor
Decl. Ex. 1 §§ 1.1-1.3. The lease commenced on
November 23, 2011, and the parties agreed it would expire by
its terms on November 30, 2023. Id. §§
lease also includes the following early termination
Tenant shall have, in its sole discretion, the right to
terminate this Lease upon completion of the third (3rd) Lease
Year or the completion of the seventh (7th) Lease Year, as
applicable, by (1) providing Landlord with twelve (12) months
written notice prior to the start of such applicable Lease
Year (either the 3rd or the 7th) that it is exercising its
early termination rights ....
Id. § 3.3. On November 26, 2013, the parties
amended the lease agreement. Id. Ex. 2. Among other
changes, Chart agreed to waive its early termination rights
as to the third lease year. Id. § C.In 2015,
Chart stopped manufacturing in the property, but continued
paying rent as set forth in the agreement. Compl. ¶ 13.
Then, on September 18, 2017, Chart sent a letter notifying
Lemond that it was terminating the lease effective at the end
of the seventh lease year (November 30, 2018). McGregor Decl.
Ex. 3. Lemond responded that the notice was untimely because
Chart was required to give twenty-four months' notice
before the completion of the seventh lease year,
i.e., on or before December 1, 2016. Id.
then commenced this suit seeking a declaration that
Chart's termination notice is of no legal force or effect
and that the lease will not expire until November 30, 2023.
Soon thereafter both parties moved for summary
Summary Judgment Standard
court shall grant summary judgment if the movant shows that
there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the
movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a); see Celotex Corp. v. Catrett,
477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986). A fact is material only when its
resolution affects the outcome of the case. Anderson v.
Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986). A dispute
is genuine if the evidence is such that it could cause a
reasonable jury to return a verdict for either party.
Id. at 252.
motion for summary judgment, the court views all evidence and
inferences in a light most favorable to the nonmoving party.
Id. at 255. The nonmoving party, however, may not
rest on mere denials or allegations in the pleadings but must
set forth specific facts sufficient to raise a genuine issue
for trial. Celotex, 477 U.S. at 324. A party
asserting that a genuine dispute exists - or cannot exist -
about a material fact must cite “particular parts of
materials in the record.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c)(1)(A). If
a plaintiff cannot support each essential element of a claim,
the court must grant ...