Massachusetts Superior Court
922 N.E.2d 862 (Mass. Sup. Ct. 2009)
Paul Marmer (Paul) (plaintiff) owned and operated a pharmacy with his father, Henry Marmer (Henry). In recognition of Paul’s increased responsibilities at the pharmacy, Henry gave Paul certificates of deposit that were to be held in escrow by Henry as trustee for Paul. In December 2002, Henry gave his daughter June a power of attorney. Henry also transferred his assets to June in an attempt to become eligible for Medicaid. June subsequently cashed in Paul’s certificates of deposit. Paul sued her in the Essex Probate and Family Court to recover the amount of the certificates. The court dismissed his claim and the Appeals Court affirmed. On November 11, 2006, June passed away. Her son, Richard, became the administrator of June’s estate. In an effort to reconcile with Paul, Richard orally agreed to pay Paul $136,000.00 for the certificates. He also orally agreed to give Paul half of June’s assets and to pay for Henry’s nursing home care until Henry qualified for Medicaid. On November 9, 2007, Paul filed suit against Richard to enforce the oral agreement. Richard filed for summary judgment on grounds that, even if there was a contract, it was unenforceable because it was not supported by consideration.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Feeley, J.)
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