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Daubman v. CBS Real Estate Co.

Supreme Court of Nebraska
580 N.W.2d 552 (1998)


Facts

Allen Daubman and Renee Daubman (plaintiffs) signed a listing agreement with Arlene Engelbert and CBS Real Estate Company (CBS) (defendants), granting an exclusive right to sell their home to Thomas Pedersen and Brenda Pedersen for $139,950 plus a 7 percent cash commission. After a bank rejected the Pedersens’ loan application, Engelbert helped the Pedersens obtain financing from another bank and took other steps without the Daubmans’ knowledge or consent in order to effect the sale, which occurred on July 31, 1992. The Daubmans brought an action for assumpsit against Engelbert and CBS, claiming that the defendants had put their own interests first in trying to close the deal and thus were not entitled to their $9,793 commission. The trial court agreed and ordered the return of the commission, plus interest and costs. Engelbert and CBS appealed, claiming that they had earned the commission because they had not breached any fiduciary duty. The court of appeals ruled that the evidence did not support the trial court’s judgment, and remanded the case with orders to dismiss. The Supreme Court of Nebraska granted the defendants’ petition to review.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Caporale, J.)

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