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Bank Leumi Trust Company of New York v. Liggett

Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New York
496 N.Y.S. 2d 14 (1985)


Facts

After purchasing a home in 1974, Joseph and Mylene Liggett executed a transfer of the property to Mylene’s name only. Thereafter, Helen Liggett (defendant), Joseph’s first wife, was awarded a judgment of $388,472 against Joseph in connection with their 1970 separation agreement. In 1980, Helen brought suit to enforce the judgment against Joseph. During the proceedings, Helen argued that the conveyance of the home to Mylene was fraudulent. In connection with the suit, Helen filed a notice of pendency against the home. A month later, Helen was awarded a $508,129 judgment against Joseph. Thereafter, Bank Leumi Trust Company of New York (Bank Leumi) (plaintiff) took out three mortgages on the home to secure various loans. Additionally, in 1982, Cosden Oil & Chemical Company (Cosden) (defendant) won a judgment against Joseph in the amount of $144,154. The following year, Helen was granted partial summary judgment in her 1980 action based on fraudulent conveyance. As a result, the home was to be sold by judicial sale, and the proceeds would be distributed to judgment creditors according to their priority based on New York Civil Practice Law and Rules (CPLR) § 5236(g). Bank Leumi filed a motion requesting a declaration from the Special Term of the Supreme Court of New York that Bank Leumi’s three mortgages would take priority over any later judgments in the distribution of the proceeds from the sale of the home. The Special Term denied Bank Leumi’s request for a declaration of priority over Cosden’s interests in the proceeds. Bank Leumi appealed.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning

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