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Jerome M. Eisenberg, Inc. v. Hall

Supreme Court of New York, Appellate Division
48 N.Y.S.3d 71 (2017)


Facts

Jerome Eisenberg was the principal for Jerome M. Eisenberg, Inc. (plaintiff). Eisenberg had a doctorate and significant expertise in classical antiquities. Maurice Hall (defendant) owned two art dealerships and was not an expert in classical antiquities. Eisenberg purchased a bust known as the Faustina II from Hall. A few years later, Eisenberg purchased a statue known as the Etruscan Warrior from Hall. At the time of the purchases, both parties believed that the pieces were authentically ancient. However, Eisenberg later learned that both pieces were actually modern replicas. Around this same time period, Eisenberg also made other purchases from Hall that turned out to be inauthentic. For those purchases, the parties rescinded the contracts and Hall refunded Eisenberg’s money. However, there was a dispute about the Faustina II and the Etruscan Warrior. Eisenberg sued, arguing that these two sale contracts should be rescinded because the parties had made a mutual mistake about the authenticity of the items. Eisenberg then moved for summary judgment.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Acosta, J.)

Dissent (Andrias, J.)

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