Zofia Rhodes v. Newport Building and Construction, Inc., 37 Fla. L. Weekly D1091 (Fla. 2d DCA May 4, 2012). Holding: Trial court erred in entering lien foreclosure judgment where owners paid off arbitration award.
Facts: Newport Building was hired to build a waterfront residence. Newport filed a lien and filed a lawsuit after Owners withheld final payment. Owners filed a counterclaim for breach of contract. The parties submitted the claims to arbitration which resulted in an award in favor of Newport. Owners paid the arbitration award in full.
Newport filed a motion to convert the arbitration award to a judgment and to foreclose the lien. Newport also requested an award of attorney’s fees. The trial court granted Newport’s motion and entered a final judgment of foreclosure.
The Second District reversed the trial court’s ruling finding that Newport was not entitled to a judgment of foreclosure because once the Owners paid the arbitration award it was unnecessary to enforce the lien. The Court also noted that the Owner’s appeal as to attorney’s fees was premature because the trial court only determined entitlement but did not determine the amount.