The Supreme Court of Minnesota was recently confronted with an interesting problem in the case of Johnson v. Gustafson. Real property was listed by the owner with the plaintiff, a real estate broker, who was to receive a $300 commission if she found a purchaser therefor. The plaintiff interested one Clarity in the property, but no offer to purchase was made. Desiring the property but being unwilling to pay the full price of $6,000, Clarity induced his friend Gustafson to purchase it for $5,700 with Clarity's money, directly from the owner, who had a right to sell it himself despite the listing. Gustafson fraudulently represented that he did not know the plaintiff or any of her customers, and that he was purchasing for himself. The scheme uncovered, plaintiff sued both Clarity and Gustafson for damages in tort. It was held that the plaintiff had stated a good cause of action since she would have earned her commission had it not been for the fraudulent acts of the defendent.
Anthony L. Dividio,
TORTS - UNFAIR COMPETITION - PREVENTING FORMATION OF CONTRACT,
Mich. L. Rev.
Available at: https://repository.law.umich.edu/mlr/vol37/iss1/10