March 22, 2020

Case Brief Precedent in Stambovsky v. Ackley, 572 N.Y.S.2d 672 (1991)

Gordon is allowed to rescind his contract because of the precedent set forth in Stambovsky v. Ackley, 572 N.Y.S.2d 672 (1991).

In Stambovsky v. Ackley, the buyer of a house was able to rescind his contract of sale upon discovering the house was reputedly possessed by poltergeists. 

The court held that it was unreasonable to expect that Stambovsky could have discovered the poltergeists upon reasonable inspection of the house. 

Stambovsky had entered the bargaining process using information from the inspection and was unaware that most, but not all, of the public knew of poltergeists in the house. 

Without knowledge that many members of the public suspected the house to be inhabited by poltergeists, Stambovsky was without an important piece of information in the bargaining process. 

Poltergeists could have affected the home's value and potential for resale which made it necessary information for both parties in order for there to be equity in the bargaining process. 

Gordon's situation meets the same circumstances held by the court in Stambovsky v. Ackley. 

The double-murder which occurred in the house seven years ago, like the poltergeists, would not have been discovered upon reasonable inspection of the house. 

 Gordon, like Stambovsky, then entered the bargaining process using only information obtained from a reasonable inspection of the house. 

The fact that most, but not all, of the public knew the house was the site of a double-murder is an important piece of information that Gordon should have had in the bargaining process because of its possible effects on the home's value and potential for resale. 

As in Stambovsky v. Ackley, Gordon was involved in a bargaining process which did not have equity of information. Gordon should therefore be able to rescind his contract of sale.