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An unpublished opinion of the North Carolina Court of Appeals does not constitute controlling legal authority. Citation is disfavored, but may be permitted in accordance with the provisions of Rule 30(e)(3) of the North Carolina Rules of Appellate Procedure.

NO. COA06-1175


Filed: 17 July 2007


    v.                        Mecklenburg County
                            No. 05CVD6320



    Appeal by plaintiff from order entered 2 May 2006 by Judge Thomas F. Moore, Jr. in District Court, Mecklenburg County. Heard in the Court of Appeals 28 March 2007.

    Harkey Lambeth, L.L.P. by Philip D. Lambeth for plaintiff- appellant.

    Leonard G. Kornberg for defendant-appellee.

    STROUD, Judge.

    This appeal involves a breach of contract action filed by plaintiff Charlotte Observer Publishing Co. against defendant Alvis Coatings, Inc. and defendant Rebecca Catherine Galida. Plaintiff filed suit against defendant Galida in her individual capacity, alleging that Galida is a guarantor of defendant Alvis' debt. On 2 May 2006, the trial court entered an order in which it found that defendant Galida had actually guaranteed the debts of a separate business, a sole proprietorship named Home Restylers, and that “atno time did [defendant Galida] sign any document guaranteeing any debt on behalf of [defendant Alvis].” The trial court then awarded plaintiff zero dollars on its claims against defendant Galida and taxed costs of the action against plaintiff. Plaintiff appeals.
    Plaintiff raises the following assignments of error on appeal: (1) “The court's finding that the defendant Galida did not guarantee the debt of Alvis Coatings, Inc.,” (2) “The Court's finding that Home Restylers and Alvis Coatings, Inc. are legally distinct entities,” and (3) “The court's ruling that the plaintiff is entitled to recover nothing from the defendant Galida.” The sole question presented in plaintiff's brief is “whether the trial court erred in failing to find a nexus between the defendant Galida and Alvis Coatings, Inc. so as to provide the legal basis for her liability to the plaintiff.” Plaintiff's eight page brief consists primarily of a recitation of facts and does not contain a single citation to relevant legal authority. We dismiss plaintiff's appeal for multiple violations of the North Carolina Rules of Appellate Procedure that impede this Court's ability to fairly identify and resolve the issues on appeal.
    North Carolina Rule of Appellate Procedure 10(c)(1) states that “each assignment of error shall, so far as practicable, be confined to a single issue of law; and shall state plainly, concisely, and without argumentation the legal basis upon which error is assigned.” N.C. R. App. P. 10(c)(1) (2005). None of plaintiff's assignments state “a legal basis upon which error is assigned.”    North Carolina Rule of Appellate Procedure 28(b)(6) provides that “[a]ssignments of error not set out in the appellant's brief, or in support of which no reason or argument is stated or authority cited, will be taken as abandoned.” N.C. R. App. P. 28(b)(6) (2005). Here, the question presented by plaintiff in its brief does not follow from plaintiff's assignments of error. Moreover, plaintiff fails to cite any legal authority in support of its “nexus” argument. Additional violations of the appellate rules present in this case include plaintiff's failure to set forth a standard of review; although plaintiff does conclude that the trial court committed “plain error” in this civil case by “failing” to find in its favor. Cf. N.C. R. App. P. 10(c)(4) (“In criminal cases, a question which was not preserved by objection noted at trial and which is not deemed preserved by rule or law without any such action, nevertheless may be made the basis of an assignment of error where the judicial action questioned is specifically and distinctly contended to amount to plain error.”).
    Although every violation of the appellate rules does not require automatic dismissal of an appeal, see State v. Hart, _____ N.C. _____, 644 S.E.2d 201 (2007), the violations in the case sub judice are so egregious that the Court cannot fairly identify or resolve the issues on appeal. For these reasons, we dismiss plaintiff's appeal in its entirety.
    Judges MCCULLOUGH and CALABRIA concur.
    Report per Rule 30(e).

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