November 23, 2005
Can't Get No Satisfaction
A previous post summarized Srour v. Dwelling Quest Corp., a New York case concerning when a real estate broker’s job is fully performed, entitling her to a fee. There, the parties’ contract defined the broker’s job as “assisting in the location and renting of a suitable apartment.”
The New York Court of Appeals decided the case yesterday, unanimously reversing the appellate decision in a summary memorandum. The lesson: you have to satisfy the conditions of your agreement to earn a brokerage fee. The court held:
Here, the rental agreement obligated the defendant-broker to assist plaintiff in renting a "suitable apartment" and provided that the broker's commission was to be paid "at the time of lease signing"; however, the apartment had become uninhabitable by the time the landlord signed the lease. Accordingly, the defendant-broker did not satisfy the brokerage agreement's condition, and is not entitled to any commission.
[Meredith R. Miller]
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