“Samora chose to accept … misrepresentations rather than … investigate the transaction after discovering the document was a warranty deed with the name of an individual [Wasia] she had never met.” (Opinion). Samora was the victim of a complex real estate fraud. As part of the fraud, she relied on misrepresentations about a warranty deed she signed, and unknowingly transferring title to Wasia. Wasia deeded the house to Saxon for a loan. Deutsche Bank (DB), Saxon’s trustee, sought to quiet title. The appellate court held that the Samora-Wasia deed was valid. As a consequence: 1) Samora’s claims accrued when she alerted the DA to the fraud, 2) there was no fraud in the factum because she knew she signed a deed, and 3) DB (who was not “closely related” to Saxon) was a holder in due course. Thus, the deed was not voided and the Wasia-Saxon deed was not a spurious lien. Title quieted in Saxon.
Tag Archives: Equitable Tolling
Deutsche Bank Trust Co. Americas, and Saxon Mortgage, v. Veronica E. Samora, 2013COA81 (May 23, 2013)
Ann Marie Damian and John M Taylor, Jr. v. Mountain Parks Electric, Inc., 2012COA217 (December 27, 2012)
“Why you wanna give me a run-around/ Is it a sure-fire way to speed things up/ When all it does is slow me down.” (Blues Traveler). In this statute of limitations case, Plaintiff brought a lawsuit under the Consumer Protection Act (CPA) that later appeared to be about unreasonable electricity rates that the Public Utilities Commission should decide. It wasn’t, so the PUC dismissed it. Back in the trial court, Defendant claimed the action was filed after the three-year statute of limitations ended. The trial court agreed, and held that the doctrine of equitable tolling did not apply, nor did the one-year extension in the CPA itself. The court of appeals affirmed. Equitable tolling does not apply if it contradicts a statute. Here, it was inconsistent with the CPA. As Plaintiffs did not show the delay was due to Defendant’s misrepresentations, the one-year extension did not apply either.
“Time keeps on slipping into the future.” (Steve Miller). But if it slips too far, say three years, the statute of limitations for a contract claim ends. In this case, a smaller company entered into a contract with a big company, who provided nearly all its revenue. The smaller company found out the big company was breaching the contract, but, not wanting the big company to cancel the contract, made a decision to protest but wait to bring a claim. It waited too long, hoping the six year statute of limitations applied instead. The court of appeals held that because the damages were not liquidated or easily determined, the limitations period was three years. The decision not to pursue the claim kept the clock ticking. But, if a contract contains a continuing duty to perform, each breach is a new claim. So, multiple, successive breaches within three years were timely and could proceed.