The Statute of Frauds a State Legislation and Rancourt Case Study
I’m working on a business law discussion question and need support to help me learn.
YOU BE THE JUDGEWRITING PROBLEM John and Susan Verba sold a Vermont lakeshore lot to Shane and Deborah Rancourt for $115,000. The Ran-courts intended to build a house on the property, but after preparing the land for construction, they learned that a wetland protection law prevented building near the lake. They sued, seeking rescission of the contract. The trial court concluded that the parties had reached their agreement under a “mutual, but innocent, mis-understanding.” The trial judge gave the Verbas a choice: they could rescind the contract and refund the purchase price, or they could give the Rancourts $55,000, the difference between the sales price and the actual market value of the land. The Rancourts appealed. Were the Rancourts entitled to rescission of the contract? Argument for the Rancourts: When the parties have made a mutual mistake about an important factual issue, either party is entitled to rescind the contract. The land is of no use to us and we want our money back. Argument for the Verbas: Both sides were acting in good faith and both sides made an honest mistake. We are willing to acknowledge that the land is worth somewhat less than we all thought, and we are willing to refund $55,000. The buyers shouldn’t complain—they are getting the property at about half the original price, and the error was as much their fault as ours.
Only one page. explain the issue, analyze it and be the judge.
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