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Doss v. Christie's

2009 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 88882 (2009)

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Doss v. Christie’s

United States District Court for the Southern District of New York

2009 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 88882 (2009)

Facts

In May 1991, Yoon Young Im, owner of Doss Inc. (plaintiffs) purchased a painting at an auction. Christie’s, Inc. (Christie) (plaintiff) had conducted the auction. Im took possession of the painting from Christie in 1991. In 2006, Im consigned the painting for sale to Sotheby’s, an auction house. While conducting due diligence regarding the painting, Sotheby’s learned that the painting had been stolen by the Nazis from Paul Rosenberg during World War II. Sotheby’s informed Im of this fact and retained possession of the painting pending resolution of any actions related to ownership claims for the painting. Subsequently, Im notified Christie of Rosenberg’s claim to the painting and sought restitution from Christie. Im and Doss brought an action against Christie, seeking rescission of the contract for the sale of the painting and recovery of the purchase price based on breach of warranty. Christie moved to dismiss the complaint as time-barred by the four-year statute of limitations for breach-of-warranty actions in New York.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Preska, C.J.)

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