Cornelison v. Kornbluth
Supreme Court of California
15 Cal. 3d 590, 542 P.2d 981 (1975)
Mary Cornelison (plaintiff) sold a house in California to Maurice and Leona Chanon. The Chanons gave Cornelison a note secured by a first deed of trust that was recorded. The deed of trust required the Chanons to pay real estate taxes and assessments, maintain the property in good condition, and pay the note’s balance to Cornelison immediately upon any resale of the property. The Chanons resold the property to John Kornbluth (defendant) by grant deed. The grant deed did not state that Kornbluth assumed the debt underlying the deed of trust, and Kornbluth did not otherwise agree to assume that debt. About four years later, Kornbluth sold the property to Richard Larkins, and the following year, the house was condemned as uninhabitable. After the Chanons defaulted on the note, Cornelison sold the property at a trustee’s sale and purchased the property for the note’s balance plus foreclosure costs. Cornelison sued Kornbluth, claiming that Kornbluth was liable for breach of the covenants under the deed of trust—which, Cornelison argued, ran with the land—and for waste committed on the property leading to condemnation. The trial court granted Kornbluth’s motion for summary judgment. Cornelison appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Sullivan, J.)
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