Mr. Kalebich was the General Manager for Duke Recycling and, in the course of his duties, on November 3, 2016, signed a guaranty for financing from Ascendum Machinery. Duke Recycling eventually failed and was liquidated. Ascendum then sued Kalebich for the $18,475.83 balance owed to it by Duke Recycling, alleging that he had executed the Guaranty in his individual capacity.
The Mecklenburg Superior Court dismissed this action with the the Court of Appeal affirming as an agent is not “individually bound when contracting within the scope of his employment[.]” Howell v. Smith, 261 N.C. 256, 260, 134 S.E.2d 381, 384 (1964) (citation omitted). As a result, “where individual responsibility is demanded, the nearly universal practice in the commercial world is that the corporate officer signs twice, once as an officer and again as an individual.” As Kalebich only signed the Guaranty once and then explicitly as the just "General Manager" he was not personally liable.
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