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Sosnoff v. Carter

568 N.Y.S.2d 43 (1991)

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Sosnoff v. Carter

New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division

568 N.Y.S.2d 43 (1991)

Facts

In 1985, Jason Carter (defendant) and Martin Sosnoff became partners in a large commercial-development project. As a result of the 1987 market crash, Sosnoff pulled out of the partnership. Carter could not find other partners to finance the project’s completion. Carter faced having to call off the project, thereby losing everything he had already invested in the project’s success. Sosnoff offered to convert his own investment into a loan. The terms were harsh, but Carter and his wife, Julia Vance Carter (defendant), agreed to sign a promissory note. The Carters made payments on the loan until 1990, when their financial position stabilized and they felt free to repudiate the note. By this time, Sosnoff had assigned the note to his wife, Toni Sosnoff (plaintiff), who sued to collect on the Carters’ debt. The Carters asserted the defense of economic duress. Toni Sosnoff appealed the trial court’s denial of her motion for summary judgment to the New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Asch, J.)

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