May 04th, 2023
US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit Opinions
Texxon v. Getty Leasing
Opinion Date: May 3, 2023
Judge: Stephen A. Higginson
Areas of Law: Bankruptcy, Civil Procedure, Contracts
Appellant Texxon Petrochemicals, LLC (“Texxon”) filed for bankruptcy. In that proceeding, Texxon filed a motion to assume executory contract, alleging that it entered into a contract with Getty Leasing in 2018 to purchase the property. Getty Leasing objected to the motion. After an evidentiary hearing, the bankruptcy court denied the motion on the grounds that, for multiple reasons, there was no valid contract to assume. The district court affirmed, finding there was insufficient evidence to show that, as required under Texas law, the alleged contract was sufficient as to the property identity or comprised an unequivocal offer or acceptance. Texxon appealed. Getty Leasing primarily contends that the appeal is mooted by the dismissal of the underlying bankruptcy proceeding.
The Fifth Circuit affirmed. The court held that the brief email exchange did not demonstrate an offer or acceptance, as required for a contract to be binding under Texas law. Texxon fails to show that the email exchange satisfied any of the three required elements of an offer. A statement that a party is “interested” in selling a property is not an offer to sell that property—it is an offer to begin discussions about a sale. Nor were the terms of the offer clear or definite. Finally, the alleged offer failed to identify the property to be conveyed. For these reasons, Texxon is unable to show the existence of a binding contract.
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