THE JUDGE SHOULD NOT HAVE, SUA SPONTE, GRANTED RELIEF NO PARTY REQUESTED (SECOND DEPT).
The Second Department, reversing (modifying) Supreme Court, determined the judge should not have, sua sponte, granted relief which was not requested by any party:
The Supreme Court should not have, sua sponte, directed the plaintiffs to prepare documents for a closing and to schedule a closing, or to pay to the defendant 27% of the profits of the plaintiff corporations. “Generally, a court may, in its discretion, grant relief that is warranted by the facts plainly appearing on the papers on both sides, if the relief granted is not too dramatically unlike the relief sought, the proof offered supports it, and there is no prejudice to any party”… . Here, no party sought the relief granted, which could be prejudicial to the appealing plaintiffs … . Newburgh Commercial Dev. Corp. v Cappelletti, 2023 NY Slip Op 02670, Second Dept 5-17-23
Practice Point: A judge’s power to grant relief sua sponte (relief not requested) is limited and such relief will not be affirmed if any party has been prejudiced.
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