Preservation twofer in contract case

The parties to a contract about the construction of a barge disputed whether an amendment required price adjustments based on the price of steel.   Blessey Marine Services, Inc. v. Jeffboat, LLC, No. 13-30731 (Nov. 10, 2014, unpublished).  In a pretrial summary judgment ruling, the district court rejected the plaintiff’s argument that the contract was unambiguous, and held a jury trial to hear extrinsic evidence and resolve the ambiguity.  On appeal, the Fifth Circuit held:

1.  Because the plaintiff did not renew the ambiguity argument in a Rule 50 motion (although it did raise the point in a motion in limine and in opposition to the other side’s motion), the Court could not consider it on appeal; and

2.  “By adducing some of the same extrinsic evidence at trial that it had sought to exclude in its motion in limine, [Plaintiff] waived its right to challenge the district court’s admission of that evidence.”  (citing Fed. R. Evid. 103(b) and Ohler v. United States, 529 U.S. 753, 755 (2000) [“[A] party introducing evidence cannot complain on appeal that the evidence was erroneously admitted.”])

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