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Gibbons Ranches, L.L.C. v. Bailey

Supreme Court of Nebraska

January 23, 2015

GIBBONS RANCHES, L.L.C., APPELLANT,
v.
JOEL D. BAILEY AND JAIMEE BAILEY, HUSBAND AND WIFE, APPELLEES. GIBBONS RANCHES, L.L.C., APPELLANT,
v.
CIRCLE B FARMS, INC., DOING BUSINESS AS CIRCLE B FARMS, A NEBRASKA CORPORATION, AND TOM BAILEY, APPELLEES

Page 809

Appeals from the District Court for Custer County: KARIN L. NOAKES, Judge.

Affirmed as modified.

Bradley D. Holbrook and Nicholas A. Buda, of Jacobsen, Orr, Lindstrom & Holbrook, P.C., L.L.O., for appellant.

Christopher P. Wickham, of Sennett, Duncan, Jenkins & Wickham, P.C., L.L.O., for appellees.

HEAVICAN, C.J., WRIGHT, CONNOLLY, STEPHAN, MCCORMACK, MILLER-LERMAN, AND CASSEL, JJ.

OPINION

Page 810

[289 Neb. 950] Cassel, J.

I. INTRODUCTION

A landlord leased separate properties to different tenants using nearly identical written documents. The parties dispute whether the leases were enforceable for their stated 5-year terms or whether a clause providing for " annual review of rental rates" resulted in unenforceable " agreements to agree." In the landlord's appeals from declaratory judgments for the tenants, we conclude that the leases unambiguously contemplated only an annual " review" and did not require annual agreement. With a minor modification, we affirm the judgments.

II. BACKGROUND

1. Parties

Gibbons Ranches, L.L.C., is a ranching entity in Custer County, Nebraska. For many years, it leased its farm ground to Joel D. Bailey and Jaimee Bailey, husband and wife, and to B Agri-Services, Inc., doing business as Circle B Farms (Circle B). We refer to ...


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