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Lawskills.com Georgia Caselaw
GOSS v. MATHIS.
76560.
POPE, Judge.
Action on agreement. Fannin Superior Court. Before Judge Horne, Senior Judge.
Plaintiff Edward M. Goss entered into an agreement with defendant Charlie G. Mathis for Mathis to construct a lake on Goss's property. Goss brought suit against Mathis alleging, inter alia, that the agreement was breached and the work was not completed. Mathis answered and filed a counterclaim, alleging the plans for the lake were revised during construction so as to enlarge the lake. Mathis prayed for damages in quantum meruit for the additional labor and material supplied by him in excess of that which was required under the original agreement. The jury returned a verdict in favor of Mathis on his counterclaim in the amount of $3,250. Goss appeals on the ground the trial court erred in admitting into evidence two documents prepared by Mathis as an estimate of his expenses and the value of his labor.
Nevertheless, an appellant must show harm as well as error to prevail on appeal from the erroneous admission of documentary evidence. Martini v. Nixon, 185 Ga. App. 328 (6) (364 SE2d 49) (1987); Pope v. Propst, 179 Ga. App. 211 (10) (345 SE2d 880) (1986). On cross-examination, it was clearly established that the lists in question were constructed from Mathis's memory several months after the actual work was performed. In announcing his ruling to admit the documents the trial court stated: "I'm going to let it go in with the understanding that the witness has testified that it is an estimate based upon fuel use as to [sic.], and let the jury arrive at its answer." The documents in question estimated the value of Mathis's labor at $28,200. Of this total value, Mathis testified the value of the additional work to be approximately $6,350. The fact that the jury returned a verdict of only $3,250 shows it did not rely upon the written estimate contained within the documents in question. Thus, we find no reversible error.
Robert K. Ballew, for appellee.
David E. Ralston, for appellant.
DECIDED SEPTEMBER 15, 1988 -- REHEARING DENIED OCTOBER 6, 1988 -- CERT. APPLIED FOR.
Thursday May 21 12:23 EDT


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