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Prince of Peace Enterprises, Inc v. Top Quality Food Market

March 14, 2011

PRINCE OF PEACE ENTERPRISES, INC., PLAINTIFF,
v.
TOP QUALITY FOOD MARKET, LLC, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Richard J. Holwell, District Judge:

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

Plaintiff Prince of Peace Enterprises, Inc. ("POP") moves for reconsideration of that portion of the Court's Memorandum Opinion and Order dated January 12, 2011, denying POP's motion to enforce its settlement agreement with defendant/ counterclaimant Madison One Acme Inc., d/b/a Solstice Medicine Co. ("Solstice"). In that opinion, the Court held that POP and Solstice's February 1, 2008, settlement agreement was unenforceable because certain internally contradictory language precluded a finding that the parties had reached a meeting of the minds. Prince of Peace Enterprises, Inc. v. Top Quality Food Market, LLC, ___ F. Supp. 2d ___, 2011 WL 118245, at *9-11 (S.D.N.Y. Jan. 12, 2011). Specifically, the Court found that certain clauses in the agreement-both prohibiting Solstice to engage in selling activity for a six month period as well as permitting that activity in that period-were contradictory and ambiguous. Id. at 10. The Court also found both parties' interpretations, as explained in submitted affidavits and declarations, reasonable. Id. POP now moves for reconsideration, arguing that the Court overlooked certain extrinsic evidence contained in the affidavits submitted in support of and in opposition to the prior motion tending to show that the parties had, in fact, reached an agreement concerning the facially contradictory language.

POP also moves to extend its time to file a notice of appeal of the Court's January 12 opinion. POP makes this request so that this Court will not be divested of jurisdiction to decide its pending motion for reconsideration due to POP's presumably anticipated appeal.

"Reconsideration of a court's previous order is an extraordinary remedy to be employed sparingly in the interests of finality and conservation of scarce judicial resources." Finkelstein v. Mardkha, 518 F. Supp. 2d 609, 611 (S.D.N.Y. 2007) (internal quotation marks omitted). Under Local Civil Rule 6.3, reconsideration is appropriate if the court overlooked controlling decisions or factual matters which, had they been considered, might reasonably have altered the result of the underlying decision. See Levine v. AtriCure, Inc., 594 F. Supp. 2d 471, 474 (S.D.N.Y.2009). To that end, "[a]ny controlling decisions or factual matters presented by a litigant for reconsideration must have been put before the Court in the underlying motion." Padilla v. Maersk Line, Ltd., 636 F. Supp. 2d 256, 258 (S.D.N.Y. 2009). Alternatively, a court may grant such a motion to correct a clear error or prevent a manifest injustice. Beljakovic v. Melohn Properties, Inc., 542 F. Supp. 2d 238, 244 (S.D.N.Y. 2005). Finally, "[a] motion for reconsideration is not a motion to reargue those issues already considered when a party does not like the way the original motion was resolved." Finkelstein, 518 F. Supp. 2d at 611 (internal quotation marks omitted).

POP directs the Court to the affidavit of its President and founder Keneth Yeung filed with its earlier motion. In that affidavit, Yeung states:

4. During the meeting POP explicitly and specifically told Ms. So and her counsel that POP requires a time period of an additional

(6) six months after the termination of POP's exclusive distributorship during which Solstice would be prohibited from selling PCP . . . .

5. During the February 1, 2008 meeting, I specifically told Ms. So and her counsel that the additional six-month period was critical to a settlement and that POP would not sign a settlement agreement wunless it included an additional six (6) months during which Solstice was prohibited from selling PCP . . . . Mr. Yuen also stated to Ms. So and Mr. Drucker that there would be no settlement without Solstice's agreement that it would not sell PCP . . . for siX

(6) months after termination of POP's distributorship. At that point, Ms. So and Mr. Drucker exited the room for approximately fifteen (15) minutes to confer privately.

6. Upon their return, Ms. So and Mr. Drucker advised that they accepted our proposal.

(Yeung Aff. ¶¶ 4-6.) POP also alleges that the declaration of Solstice's executive, Wina So, does not refute Yeung's statements. Therein, So states:

7. Agreed Point No. 3 provides: "[Solstice] can sell after termination period of distributorship mentioned in ¶ 2."

8. I specifically crossed out the word "period" in Agreed Point No. 3 because I wanted to make it clear that [Solstice] would be able to sell after the termination of POP's distributorship and not after any termination period.

. . . 13. I would not have agreed to any contract term that prohibited Solstice from selling PCP for a six month period after termination of POP's distributorship and that is why I made sure in Agreed Point 3 that Solstice has the specific right to ...


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