THE PROMISSORY NOTE WAS NOT DEMONSTRATED TO BE AN INSTRUMENT FOR THE PAYMENT OF MONEY ONLY, THE MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT IN LIEU OF COMPLAINT SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN GRANTED (SECOND DEPT).
The Second Department, reversing Supreme Court, determined plaintiff’s motion for summary judgment in lieu of complaint (CPLR 3213) based upon a promissory note should not have been granted. The note was not demonstrated to be an instrument for the payment of money only:
Pursuant to CPLR 3213, a plaintiff demonstrates its prima facie entitlement to judgment as a matter of law with respect to a promissory note if it shows “the existence of a promissory note, executed by the defendant, containing an unequivocal and unconditional obligation to repay, and the failure by the defendant to pay in accordance with the note’s terms” … . “Where the instrument requires something in addition to defendant’s explicit promise to pay a sum of money, CPLR 3213 is unavailable” … . Once the plaintiff has established its prima facie entitlement to judgment as a matter of law, “the burden then shifts to the defendant to submit evidence establishing the existence of a triable issue with respect to a bona fide defense” … .
Here, the plaintiffs failed to establish, prima facie, that the subject promissory note was an instrument for the payment of money only … . In support of their motion, the plaintiffs submitted the promissory note, which refers to the asset sale/purchase agreement and provides the defendants with “an absolute right of set-off against the entire unpaid principal balance of [the] Note based upon any and all provisions of the Asset Sale/Purchase Agreement.” Under the circumstances, “outside proof” was required, “other than simple proof of nonpayment,” to establish the plaintiffs’ prima facie case … . Express Valentine Auto Repair Shop, Inc. v New York Taxi 2, Inc., 2020 NY Slip Op 03644, Second Dept 7-1-20