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Posted: August 13, 2015

Right of First Refusal to Purchase Real Estate Subject to Statute of Frauds

On August 5, 2015, the Second Department issued a decision in Educational Center for New Americans, Inc. v. 66th Ave. Realty Co., 2015 NY Slip Op. 06414, affirming the dismissal of a claim to enforce an oral grant of a right of first refusal to purchase real estate, explaining:

A right of first refusal is subject to the statute of frauds, which provides that a contract for the sale of any real property, or an interest therein, is void unless the contract or some note or memorandum thereof, expressing the consideration, is in writing, subscribed by the party to be charged. Accordingly, as the alleged promise is not evidenced by a writing, its enforcement is barred by the statute of frauds. Moreover, the plaintiff failed to demonstrate that, pursuant to the doctrine of promissory estoppel, the defendants should be precluded from invoking the statute of frauds.

(Internal quotations and citations omitted).

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