Wynn v. Monterey Club

111 Cal. App. 3d 789, 168 Cal. Rptr. 789 (1980)

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Wynn v. Monterey Club

California Court of Appeal
111 Cal. App. 3d 789, 168 Cal. Rptr. 789 (1980)

  • Written by Noah Lewis, JD

Facts

Robert Wynn (plaintiff) was married to a compulsive gambler who frequented the Rainbow and Monterey Clubs (defendants), licensed card clubs owned by the same owners. The clubs knew of the wife’s gambling problem and gave her check-cashing privileges at the clubs. In late 1973, to cover her losses, Wynn’s wife cashed $1,750 worth of checks at the clubs, but the checks bounced due to insufficient funds. The gambling problem placed a severe strain on the marriage. Wynn called Lochhead, one of the owners of the two clubs, to discuss the problem of his wife’s indebtedness, which was the wife’s individual debt, not marital debt. Wynn agreed to pay his wife’s debt in exchange for Lochhead’s promise that his wife would be denied access to the clubs and not given any further check-cashing privileges. Wynn paid the debt in the following year. Wynn’s wife relapsed after a couple of years, and in May 1977, Wynn learned that his wife was gambling at the clubs and cashing checks there. The wife had suffered $30,000 in losses and had begun to borrow money from friends. Wynn filed for divorce. Wynn also sued the clubs for breach of contract, seeking emotional-distress damages. The clubs moved for summary judgment, which the district court granted provided that the clubs refunded Wynn’s $1,750 plus interest. Wynn appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Compton, J.)

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