Warning

Info

Table of Contents
Jawshu, CLS '24 |

1 0

Back to briefs

Wolf v. Marlton Corp.

(1959)

New Jersey Superior Court, Appellate Division - 154 A.2d 625, 57 N.J. Super. 278

tl;dr:

A couple wanted to get out of a contract for a new home, so they threatened the builder that they would sell the home to an undesirable purchaser if they were forced to go through with it. The builder was able to argue that the threat constituted duress.

Video Summary


Case Summary

In 1959, the Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division, decided the case of Wolf v. Marlton Corp., which centered around a claim of duress and breach of contract. The Wolfs, a couple planning to buy a house from Marlton Corp., later chose not to proceed with the purchase due to marital problems. The Wolfs' lawyer used threatening tactics with Marlton in an attempt to cancel the contract and recover the deposit paid. Feeling threatened, Marlton agreed to cancel the contract but kept the deposit as compensation. Subsequently, the Wolfs sued Marlton for breach of contract and demanded their deposit back.

The trial court favored the Wolfs, but the appellate court reversed the decision, holding that the issue was not a breach of contract by Marlton, but rather duress by the Wolfs. The court adopted a broad test for duress, which included wrongful acts or threats that overpowered the other party's free will. The court deemed the lawyer's threats as wrongful despite being legal, as they constituted an abuse of legal remedies and immorality. The decision also confirmed that the threats caused fear and coercion in Marlton, leading them to unwillingly agree to cancel the contract.

This case was significant as it set a new standard for duress in New Jersey, expanding its definition beyond physical force or violence and emphasizing that the impact of the act or threat on the victim's mind should be the focus – not the nature or legality of the act or threat itself.

ICRAIssue, Conclusion, Rule, Analysis for Wolf v. Marlton Corp.

LSD+ exclusive

This content is exclusively for LSD+ users.

Sign up for LSD+ for full access to the Wolf v. Marlton Corp. case brief summary.

Enjoy unlimited access with our 14-day free trial.

Facts & HoldingWolf v. Marlton Corp. case brief facts & holding

Facts:The Wolfs (plaintiffs, husband and wife) sought to recover a...

Holding:The defendant's counsel, who prepared the notice of breach delivered...

LSD+ exclusive

This content is exclusively for LSD+ users.

Sign up for LSD+ for full access to the Wolf v. Marlton Corp. case brief summary.

Enjoy unlimited access with our 14-day free trial.

DeepDiveHighlight a legal term to see the definition

Font size -+
Wolf v. Marlton Corp. | Case Brief DeepDive
Majority opinion, author: Freund, J. A. D.
Level 1
Click below 👇 to DeepDive

The defendant builder was sued by the plaintiffs to recover a deposit of $2,450 after the sale of a house fell through. The County Court ruled in favor of the plaintiffs, but the builder appealed. The contract stated that if the buyer failed to make additional payments, the seller could retain the deposit as compensation for expenses. However, the trial judge concluded that the builder was required to give notice of the closing in, which they did not do. The defendant's claim of the buyers' attorney being notified of the closing in was not enough to prove their case. The doctrine of estoppel applies. The alternative ground for reversal is that the buyers breached the agreement of sale by threatening to resell the house to an undesirable purchaser and ruin the defendant's building business if the contract was carried out. The appellant's argument lacks a systematic development of the factual basis. The plaintiffs' attorney informed the defendant's sales agent that the plaintiffs wanted to get their money back due to certain problems. During a conversation with the plaintiffs' attorney, the defendant threatened to ruin their business and reputation if they did not accept his settlement offer of $450. The plaintiffs felt threatened and believed that they had no choice but to accept the offer. Despite the conversation, the defendant did not follow through with any legal action, and the plaintiffs did not notify anyone about the conversation. The lower court's ruling in favor of the plaintiffs was correct.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.

LSD+ exclusive

This content is exclusively for LSD+ users.

Sign up for LSD+ for full access to the Wolf v. Marlton Corp. case brief summary.

Enjoy unlimited access with our 14-day free trial.

🤯 High points 🤯Key points contributed by students on LSD

LSD+ exclusive

This content is exclusively for LSD+ users.

Sign up for LSD+ for full access to the Wolf v. Marlton Corp. case brief summary.

Enjoy unlimited access with our 14-day free trial.

LSD+ Case Briefs

Features

  • DeepDive for detailed case analysis
  • Over 50,000 existing case briefs
  • Instant briefs for another 6,000,000 cases
  • Highlight dictionary for legal term definitions
  • Social learning with chat and high points

Over 50,000 Cases Briefed

LSD+ gives you access to over 50,000 case briefs, more than anyone else. Be the first to email us the website of a case brief product that offers you more case briefs and we'll give you a free year of LSD+.

14-Day Free Trial

Unlimited access. Read as much content as you want during your trial with no device limitations. Cancel any time during your trial and keep access for the full 14 days.

Integrated Legal Dictionary

Lawyers and judges love to use big words. And Latin, for some reason.

Highlight a legal term in LSD Briefs and get an instant, plain English definition. Try highlighting contract or specific performance. No need to search or read through a list of definitions, simply highlight the words you don’t know and our LSDefine integration will instantly give you a definition to any of over 30,000 legal terms.

DeepDive

DeepDive allows you to explore legal cases like never before. DeepDive offers multiple levels of case summaries, which empowers you to quickly and easily find the information you need to stay on top of readings. Easily navigate through summary levels and click on any text to get more detail, all the way down to the original legal case text.

Brief anything. Instantly.

Our proprietary state-of-the-art system can instantly brief over 6,000,000 US cases. That means we can probably brief that case that your professor assigned last night when she sent you a poorly scanned pdf and told you to read every third paragraph. Or maybe she uploaded it to Canvas and didn’t really tell you to read it, but you know you probably should. Tenure does wild things to good people.

Social Learning with Chat and High Points

Study groups are a great way to learn and explore a case. LSD has chat rooms for each case to let you ask questions across the community and hear what other students struggled with and how they put it all together. Learn the key points of every case from other LSD+ users and share your knowledge with LSD High Points.

Real-Time Brief Feedback

Don’t settle for mistakes in briefs that have been there for 10 years and never fixed. Find an issue or something missing from a brief? Down vote and we will make improvements. All of our case brief editors graduated from from T14 law schools.

Wolf v. Marlton Corp.

Chat for Wolf v. Marlton Corp.
brief-48
👍 Chat vibe: 0 👎
Help us make LSD better!
Tell us what's important to you
LSD+ is ad-free, with DMs, discounts, case briefs & more.