Lemon Law

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Procedural Posture

Appellant salmon sushi Corp sought review of an order of the Superior Court of Orange County (California), which required them as well as an equipment lessee to pay damages to respondent equipment lessor when the equipment lessee breached a lease agreement with respondent and appellants induced the breach. Appellants contended that the trial court should have required respondent to mitigate his damages by re-leasing the equipment.

Overview

Appellant salesmen assisted in the sale of a business where the seller (lessee) had a lease agreement with respondent equipment lessor to include an assumption of the lease in any contract to sell his business. Appellants induced the lessee to leave out the assumption provision stating that the agreement was invalid. Respondent filed an action against all of them for damages, attorney fees, and cost. The trial court found that appellants and the lessee were jointly and severally liable for damages. Appellants sought review contending that the trial court improperly measured damages and they should have required respondent to mitigate his damages by re-leasing the equipment he received back from lessee. The court affirmed the amount of damages awarded to respondent, but modified the order to provide the sum awarded should bear interest from the date of the judgment. The court stated that the rule of mitigation of damages was not applicable to respondent because its imposition would have deprived him the benefit of subsequent contracts which would have been available to him irrespective of the breach.

Outcome

The court affirmed the amount of damages awarded to respondent, but modified the order to provide the sum awarded bear interest from the date of the judgment. The court stated that the rule of mitigation of damages was not applicable to respondent because its imposition would have deprived him the benefit of subsequent contracts, which would have been available to him irrespective of the breach.

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