law-constructive trust equitable remedy | bona-fide-purchaser-buyer | equitable remedies |
CONSTRUCTIVE TRUST DEFINED
A constructive trust is an equitable remedy created by the courts to prevent unjust enrichment. Holmes v. Kent,
221 S.W.3d 622, 628 (Tex. 2007) (per curiam) (quoting Meadows v. Bierschwale, 516 S.W.2d 125, 131 (Tex.
1974)); III Forks Real Estate, L.P. v. Cohen, 228 S.W.3d 810, 817 (Tex. App.-Dallas 2007, no pet.). A
constructive trust requires the person who holds title to property “to convey it to another, on the ground that his
acquisition or retention of the property is wrongful and that he would be unjustly enriched if he were permitted to
retain the property.” Baker Botts, L.L.P. v. Cailoux, 224 S.W.3d 723, 736 (Tex. App.-San Antonio 2007, pet.
denied) (quoting Talley v. Howsley, 142 Tex. 81, 176 S.W.2d 158, 160 (1943)).
To be entitled to a constructive trust on the funds disbursed to appellees, appellants were required to prove (1)
breach of a special trust, fiduciary relationship, or actual fraud; (2) unjust enrichment of the wrongdoer; and (3)
tracing to an identifiable res. III Forks Real Estate, L.P., 228 S.W.3d at 817. Whether to impose a constructive
trust is within the trial court's discretion. Id.
CONSTRUCTIVE TRUST CASE LAW FROM HOUSTON COURTS OF APPEALS
Hahn v. Love (Tex.App.- Houston [1st Dist.] Mar. 26, 2009)(Keyes)
(UFTA fraudulent transfer claim, bona fide purchaser defense, constructive trust)
REVERSE TC JUDGMENT AND REMAND CASE TO TC FOR FURTHER PROCEEDINGS:
Opinion by Justice Keyes
Before Chief Justice Radack, Justices Keyes and Higley
01-07-00096-CV Allon R. Hahn, Individually and d/b/a Hahn's Gulf Service v. Bertrand Love
Appeal from 157th District Court of Harris County
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