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Cultum v. Heritage House Realtors, Inc.

694 P.2d 630 (1985)

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Cultum v. Heritage House Realtors, Inc.

Washington Supreme Court

694 P.2d 630 (1985)

Facts

Diane Cultum (plaintiff) hired Heritage House Realtors, Inc. (defendant), a real estate agency, to assist her in purchasing a house. Cultum made an offer on a house, and Heritage prepared an earnest-money agreement from a standardized form. The standardized form was created by attorneys. Cultum wanted to require an inspection of the house and wanted to have the opportunity to withdraw her offer if she was not satisfied with the inspection. Heritage drafted a clause as an addendum to the earnest-money agreement. After the inspection of the house, Cultum wished to rescind her offer. The sellers refused to sign the rescission papers, claiming that the house was in fine shape and that the addendum drafted by Heritage permitted Cultum to withdraw her offer only if the inspection was objectively unsatisfactory. Approximately six months later, Heritage returned Cultum’s earnest money. Cultum sued Heritage, seeking damages for the time her earnest money was tied up and seeking an injunction prohibiting Heritage from further engaging in the unauthorized practice of law. The trial court ruled in favor of Cultum and granted the injunction. Heritage appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Pearson, J.)

Concurrence (Brachtenbach, J.)

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