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Property Keyed to French
Sparks v. Fidelity National Title Insurance Company
Citation:294 F.3d 259 (1st Cir. 2002)
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The plaintiff, Sparks, entered into three successive brokerage agreements regarding the property. The first was executed between Sparks and one of the defendants, Nation, and covered the period from June 27, 1995, through December 31, 1995. Under that agreement, Sparks agreed to use reasonable efforts to procure buyers for the property, ready, willing, and able to purchase the property in accordance with the price, terms, and conditions to be agreed upon. Nation, in turn, agreed to pay Sparks a specified broker’s fee for each homesite or home that he sold on the property. The second brokerage agreement, also between Sparks and Nations, covered the period from January 1, 1996, to December 31, 1996, and contained substantially the same terms as the first agreement, with one notable difference. In the second agreement Sparks agreed to use reasonable efforts to procure buyers for the property ready, willing, and able to purchase the property in accordance with the price, terms, and conditions described in the attachment “A.” The attachment listed fifteen specific lots on the property with named prices for all but three of them. The third, and final, agreement was entered into between Sparks and the other defendant, Fidelity, Nation’s corporate affiliate and successor in interest. This agreement was substantially similar to the second, but had three important differences: (1) The attachment now listed twenty-three lots with prices for all but two; (2) It indicated Fidelity had the exclusive right to change prices on the attachment as long as it gave Sparks ten days notice before prices were changed; and (3) If Fidelity secured a single buyer to buy more than ten percent of the entire property during the term of the agreement, Sparks would not receive commission from such a sale. Sparks oved into a model home on the property, and devoted his full attention to the job, but none of the offers he procured was accepted by Nations or Fidelity. He had one close deal for an individuals lot in September of 1996, and one close deal in 1997 for a sale of the entire property. The 1997 deal fell through when the buyer procured by Sparks notified Fidelity it could not obtain financing and withdrew the unsigned purchase and sale agreement. After Spark’s brokerage agreements expired Fidelity sold the property for 15.93 million to a buyer not introduced by Sparks.
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