ESTATE OF WAYNE BAKER, by its Executor, LISA JAMES, Plaintiff-Appellee,
ALLEN NEPPER, IN HIS CAPACITY AS CLOSING ATTORNEY AND ESCROW AGENT FOR THE SALE OF AN ACREAGE WITH SEPARATELY OWNED MACHINE SHED AND SHOP, Defendant-Appellee, and KATHY POPE, KRISTY MUNDEN, and DUSTIN POPE, Intervenors-Appellants.
from the Iowa District Court for Crawford County, Edward A.
Pope, Kristy Munden, and Dustin Pope appeal the district
court's grant of summary judgment in favor of Wayne
Sailer or Reimer, Lohman, Reitz, Sailer & Ullrich,
Denison, for appellants.
D. Ehmcke, Jacob V. Kline, and Allyson C. Dirksen of Heidman
Law Firm, P.L.L.C., Sioux City, for appellees.
Considered by Danilson, C.J., and Potterfield and Bower, JJ.
Pope, Kristy Munden, and Dustin Pope (the Intervenors) appeal
the district court's grant of summary judgment in favor
of Wayne Baker. We affirm.
Background Facts and Proceedings
moved to an acreage owned by his parents, Lula and Vernie
Baker, in 1966 where he farmed with his father and operated a
trucking business. In 1980 a large Morton-style machine shed
was constructed on the property. The building was moveable
except for a poured concrete pad. Further improvements and
alterations were made to the building. Baker claims the
construction and improvement of the shed were at his sole
expense and his parents understood the building was solely
his personal property.
Baker died on September 5, 2014,  and her estate was opened on
September 18. The estate made no claim to the shed. The
acreage was to be auctioned on August 20, 2016. Baker was
contacted by the auctioneer and asked to sell the building
along with the acreage, as it would likely increase interest
and the sale price. Baker consented and stopped preparing to
move the building to another site. Baker participated in the
auction and purchased the property, including the shed, for
August 22, Baker filed an action naming Allen Nepper, the
closing and escrow agent, as defendant and claiming Baker was
entitled to share in the proceeds of the sale under the terms
of Lula's will. Kathy and Dustin Pope, with Kristy
Munden, also beneficiaries of Lula's will, intervened in
the action. On November 1, Baker filed a motion for summary
judgment, and on December 27, the motion was granted. The
Intervenors now appeal.
Standard of Review
review a district court's grant of summary judgement for
correction of errors at law. Iowa R. App. P. 6.907. Summary
judgment is properly granted when the moving party
demonstrates there is no genuine issue of material fact and
he is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. W. Bend
Mut. Ins. Co. v. Iowa Iron Works, Inc., 503 N.W.2d 596,
598 (Iowa 1993). An issue is genuine "if the evidence is
such that a reasonable finder of fact could return a verdict
or decision for the nonmoving party." Parish v.
Jumpking, Inc., 719 N.W.2d 540, 543 (Iowa 2006). We also
review the record in the light most favorable to the
nonmoving party. Minor v. State, 819 N.W.2d 383, 393
we review the evidence in the light most favorable to the
nonmoving party, the Intervenors "may not rest upon the
mere allegations of [their] pleading but must set forth
specific facts showing the existence of a genuine issue for
trial." Hlubek v. Pelecky, 701 N.W.2d 93, 95
(Iowa 2005) (citing Iowa R. Civ. P. 1.981(5)). Mere