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Seven Hanover Associates, LLC v. Jones Lang Lasalle Americas

February 19, 2008

SEVEN HANOVER ASSOCIATES, LLC, WATER/PEARL ASSOCIATES, LLC, AND BUILTLAND, LLC, PLAINTIFFS,
v.
JONES LANG LASALLE AMERICAS, INC., DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable Paul A. Crotty, United States District Judge

ORDER

Plaintiffs Seven Hanover Associates, LLC, Water/Pearl Associates, LLC, and Builtland, LLC, (collectively "Plaintiffs"), are owners of large commercial real estate buildings in Manhattan. Plaintiffs hired Defendant Jones Lang Lasalle Americas, Inc. ("JLL") to manage and lease out Plaintiffs' properties on their behalf from March 1997 until June 2003, when Plaintiffs had a change of management. One year later, Plaintiffs instituted this action alleging, in a 51-page complaint, seven claims for relief:

(1) Fraudulent Misrepresentation

(2) Breach of Fiduciary Duty

(3) Breach of Contract

(4) Unjust Enrichment

(5) Conversion (brought by Plaintiff Builtland, LLC)

(6) Negligent Supervision and Negligent Retention

(7) Trespass to Chattel

The prayers for relief include actual, consequential, and punitive damages, disgorgement of profits, return of all monies paid, and the imposition of a constructive trust. For good measure, Plaintiffs' prayer for relief also includes eighth and ninth claims for relief seeking, respectively, consequential damages for their fraudulent concealment claim, and an accounting of all monies paid to Defendants, presumably as part of their faithless servant claim. (Compl. ¶¶ 265 (H) and (I).) These two claims for relief are alleged only in the prayer and not elsewhere in the 265 separate paragraphs of allegations.

JLL now moves for partial summary judgment on Plaintiffs' third claim for relief (breach of contract) and for complete summary judgment on all other claims. JLL also seeks dismissal of Plaintiffs' request for equitable remedies, quasi-contractual remedies, punitive damages, and the exclusion from damage calculations of any amounts charged by JLL but passed to (and paid by) the tenants in Plaintiffs' buildings. Finally, JLL seeks summary judgment on a counterclaim for breach of a brokerage agreement.

At its heart, this is an action for breach of contract, and the Court dismisses all non-contractual claims, including claims sounding in tort and quasi-contract, and claims for equitable remedies and punitive damages. With respect to the breach of contract claims and the counterclaim, JLL's motion is denied.

SUMMARY OF FACTS*fn1

In February 1997, Plaintiffs and Defendant entered into property management contracts (the "management agreements") for properties at 335 Madison Avenue and Seven Hanover Square. Defendant JLL also entered into a contract with Plaintiffs to provide leasing services for the Seven Hanover property (the "leasing agreement"). The Plaintiffs provided space to the Defendant's employees so that management and leasing services would be provided on-site. The contracts required JLL to do:

all things necessary, required or desirable for the proper and efficient management, operation, and maintenance of the Properties, in a manner comparable to that of other property managers or comparable major ...


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