Contracts Keyed to Knapp
Lenawee County Board of Health v. Messerly
ProfessorMelissa A. Hale
CaseCast™ – "What you need to know"
The Appellants, William and Martha Messerly (Appellants), owned an apartment building, which they sold to the Appellees, Carl and Nancy Pickles (Appellees), who hoped to use the building as rental property. The land contract contained a provision stating that the purchaser agreed to accept the property “as is.” Soon after taking possession, Appellees discovered raw sewage seeping out of the ground. The Lenawee County Board of Health condemned the property and initiated suit to obtain a permanent injunction proscribing human habitation. Appellants then filed a cross-complaint against Appellees seeking payment on the land contract. Appellees counterclaimed seeking rescission of the contract based on the mutual mistake of the parties that the property was fit for human habitation and could therefore generate rental income. The trial court found against the Appellees. The Court of Appeals found that the mutual mistake went to a basic element of the contract and granted rescission.
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