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Savage v. Unified Windows System, Inc.

Supreme Court of New York, Second Department

January 27, 2014

Dawn Borum Savage and HERMAN SAVAGE, Appellants,
v.
Unified Windows System, Inc., Respondent.

PRESENT:: LaSALLE, J.P., NICOLAI and IANNACCI, JJ

Appeal from a judgment of the District Court of Nassau County, Second District (Eugene H. Shifrin, Ct. Atty. Ref.), entered November 4, 2011. The judgment, after a nonjury trial, dismissed the action.

ORDERED that the judgment is affirmed, without costs.

In this small claims action, plaintiffs seek to recover the sum of $1, 300, the amount they paid to repair a basement wall and replace a carpet as a result of defendant's allegedly improper installation of a front door and frame. After a nonjury trial, the District Court dismissed the action, finding that plaintiffs had failed to make out a prima facie case.

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 Kreisler Borg Florman Gen. Constr. Co., Inc. v Rosen & Morelli, 181 A.D.2d 813 [1992]). 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 A.D.2d 564 [1992]). This standard applies with greater force to judgments rendered in the Small Claims Part of the court (see Williams v Roper, 269 A.D.2d 125, 126 [2000]). Upon a review of the record, we find that the judgment rendered substantial justice between the parties according to the rules and principles of substantive law (see UDCA 1804, 1807; Ross v Friedman, 269 A.D.2d 584 [2000]).

Accordingly, the judgment is affirmed.

LaSalle, J.P., Nicolai and Iannacci, JJ., concur.


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