Judge Donald Floyd, 172nd District Court, abused his discretion by denying a motion to compel arbitration in a construction defect lawsuit, an appeals court recently ruled.

Brent and Tatayana Mainwaring filed suit against Ronnie Anderson and his company, Anderson Construction, on Jan. 10, 2010, in Jefferson County District Court.

Al Jones and Al Jones Architect AIA LLC are also defendants in the suit.

According to the lawsuit, in 2005 the Mainwarings contracted with Anderson to build a home located on Moore Road in Beaumont.

Although the couple moved into the home in September 2008, they contend construction was never finished and the home still contains numerous defects in the roof trusses and framing, air conditioning, mortar and masonry, exterior doors and windows and weep holes.

Court records show that on July 23 the architect defendants appealed Judge Floyd’s ruling denying their motion to compel arbitration.

On Dec. 20 the Ninth Court of Appeals of Texas released a memorandum opinion reversing and remanding the judge’s order.

“Because a valid arbitration clause exists and the architects have not waived their right to arbitration, we hold that the trial court abused its discretion in  denying  the architects’ motion to compel arbitration,” writes Justice Hollis Horton in the court’s opinion.

“We reverse the trial court’s order, remand this case to the trial court, and instruct the trial court to enter an order compelling  the arbitration of the dispute between the architects and the Mainwarings.”

The Mainwarings are represented by Beaumont attorney Casey H. Hargroder.

Attorney Paul J. Goldenberg represents the architects.

Trial case No. E185-627

Appeals case No. 09-12-324-CV

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