SUPREME COURT, APPELLATE TERM, SECOND DEPARTMENT, 9th and 10th JUDICIAL DISTRICTS New York Supreme and/or Appellate Courts
December 21, 2012
MICHAEL A. CUCCI DOING BUSINESS AS FORESIGHT SERVICE CENTER, LTD.,
Appeal from a judgment of the District Court of Nassau County, Third District (Anna Anzalone, J.), entered May 19, 2011.
Baiata v Cucci
Decided on December 21, 2012
Appellate Term, Second Department
Published by New York State Law Reporting Bureau pursuant to Judiciary Law § 431.
This opinion is uncorrected and will not be published in the printed Official Reports.
PRESENT: NICOLAI, P.J., LaCAVA and LaSALLE, JJ
The judgment, after a non-jury trial, awarded plaintiff the principal sum of $2,700 and dismissed defendant's counterclaim.
ORDERED that the judgment is affirmed, without costs.
Plaintiff commenced this small claims action to recover the sum of $2,700, alleging that he was overcharged by defendant for the repair of his boat. Defendant interposed a counterclaim in the amount of $4,429.70, alleging additional charges owed by plaintiff for the repair of his boat. At a non-jury trial, plaintiff testified that defendant had charged him for the same repair twice due to defendant's failure to properly diagnose the problem the first time. Defendant testified that all his repairs were warranted. Following the trial, the District Court awarded plaintiff the principal sum of $2,700 and dismissed defendant's counterclaim. Upon a review of the record, we find that the judgment provided the parties with substantial justice according to the rules and principles of substantive law (UDCA 1804, 1807; see Ross v Friedman, 269 AD2d 584 ; Williams v Roper, 269 AD2d 125, 126 ).
The decision of a fact-finding court should not be disturbed upon appeal unless it is obvious that the court's conclusions could not be reached under any fair interpretation of the evidence (see Claridge Gardens v Menotti, 160 AD2d 544 ). This standard applies with greater force to judgments rendered in the Small Claims Part of the court (see Williams v Roper, 269 AD2d at 126). Furthermore, the determination of a trier of fact as to issues of credibility is given substantial deference, as a trial court's opportunity to observe and evaluate the testimony and demeanor of the witnesses affords it a better perspective from which to assess their credibility (see Vizzari v State of New York, 184 AD2d 564 ; Kincade v Kincade, 178 AD2d 510, 511 ). As the record supports the trial court's determination, we find no reason to disturb the judgment.
Accordingly, the judgment is affirmed.
Nicolai, P.J., LaCava and LaSalle, JJ., concur. Decision Date: December 21, 2012
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