Rudman v. Cowles Communication, Inc.
New York Court of Appeals
280 N.E.2d 867 (1972)
Jack Rudman (plaintiff) started a successful company publishing test-prep materials. Rudman sold his business to Cowles Communication, Inc. (Cowles) (defendant). Rudman and Cowles entered two contracts. Under the first, Cowles acquired Rudman’s business. Under the second, Rudman became a Cowles employee. The employment agreement did not provide much detail about Rudman’s duties, but Rudman was named a vice-president and understood that he would be in charge of the test-prep-publishing division. Shortly after starting at Cowles, Rudman became upset about how much Cowles changed Rudman’s test-prep books without Rudman’s approval. Rudman discovered both that Cowles had a large team working on the materials outside Rudman’s control and that Rudman’s name would not be on the published books. Cowles then informed Rudman that Rudman ranked below two other Cowles employees working on the test-prep materials. Rudman said that this arrangement was unacceptable, leading Cowles to ignore him for several months and finally fire him before his contract expired. Rudman sued Cowles for: (1) wrongful discharge and (2) rescission of the business-acquisition contract based on fraud. The trial court ruled in favor of Rudman on the wrongful discharge claim, but it ruled for Cowles on the fraud claim. Rudman appealed. Rudman argued that, because the two contracts were intertwined, the employment contract breach required rescission of the acquisition contract.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Breitel, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 724,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Berkeley, and Northwestern—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students.Unlock this case briefRead our student testimonials
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students.Learn about our approachRead more about Quimbee
Here's why 724,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 45,600 briefs, keyed to 983 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.