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In the Matter of Merrick Holding Corp. v. Board of Assessors
New York Court of Appeals
382 N.E.2d 1341, 45 N.Y.2d 538, 410 N.Y.S.2d 565 (1978)
Merrick Holding Corp. (Merrick) (plaintiff) owned a 29-store shopping center in New York. Merrick leased to three important tenants—Fair Food, F. W. Woolworth, and National Shoes—at rates below fair market rent to ensure that the shopping center had flagship stores that would attract customers and other tenants. The board of assessors (the board) used the income-capitalization method of assessment to determine the property’s value for property-tax purposes. Instead of factoring in the actual rent that Merrick’s tenants paid, the board used the fair market rent of the property. Merrick challenged the assessment in state court. The special term court upheld the board’s assessment. The appellate division reversed the special term court, holding that it was improper for the board to use the fair market rent in its valuation. On remand, the special term granted Merrick’s motion for summary judgment. The board appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Fuchsberg, J.)
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