Woods v. Antiquorum USA
OPINION & ORDER re: 12 MOTION To Enforce Settlement Agreement filed by Andrew Woods: For the foregoing reasons, Woods' motion to enforce the settlement is granted. The Clerk of Court is directed to enter judgment against Antiquorum in the amount of one hundred and thirty thousand dollars ($130,000) plus any post-judgment interest, and to terminate the motion pending at ECF No. 12. (Signed by Judge William H. Pauley, III on 11/6/2017) (jwh)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
OPINION & ORDER
WILLIAM H. PAULEY III, District Judge:
Plaintiff Andrew Woods moves to enforce the settlement agreement entered into
by Woods and Defendant Antiquorum USA, Inc. (“Antiquorum”). Antiquorum’s deadline to
oppose this motion has passed. For the reasons that follow, Woods’ motion is granted and
Antiquorum is ordered to pay Woods $130,000 plus any post-judgment interest.
Woods filed this lawsuit in May 2017. He alleged that he had entered into a
consignment agreement with Antiquorum, a watch auctioneer, in which Antiquorum agreed to
sell Woods’ Patek Philippe Watch. Under the consignment agreement, Antiquorum was to pay
Woods $300,000 after the sale. (Complaint, ECF No. 1 at 2; Complaint, Ex. 3 at 2.)
Antiquorum sold the watch, but made no payment to Woods. It admitted that it owed the money
on numerous occasions, but cited “internal issues” preventing payment. (Complaint at 3;
Complaint, Ex. 2 at 2.)
In August 2017, Woods informed this Court that the parties had reached a
settlement. The settlement agreement required that Antiquorum pay Woods the amount owed,
plus attorney’s fees and interest, in three installments: (1) $100,000 by June 30, 2017; (2)
$100,000 by July 30, 2017; and (3) $130,000 by August 30, 2017. (Motion to Enforce
Settlement Agreement, ECF No. 12, Ex. 1 (“Settlement”) § 5.) This final amount would be
reduced to $100,000 if Woods did not submit to Antiquorum five Patek Philippe “minute
repeaters” 1 for consignment by August 30, 2017. (Settlement § 5.) If Antiquorum missed any of
these deadlines, it agreed to be held to “the entire unpaid balance together with interest and
attorney’s fees of $30,000.” (Settlement § 6.)
After learning of the pending settlement, this Court closed the case. (Order, ECF
No. 8.) But it authorized either party to write within 30 days should either wish that this Court
retain jurisdiction to enforce the settlement agreement. On September 15, 2017, Woods notified
this Court that Antiquorum had failed to make its final payment and moved to reopen the case.
This Court granted that request and entered a briefing schedule for Woods’ motion to enforce the
settlement. The clock has run out and Antiquorum neither filed an opposition to Woods’ motion
nor paid the final installment.
“A district court has the power to enforce summarily, on motion, a settlement
agreement reached in a case that was pending before it.” Meetings & Expositions, Inc. v. Tandy
Corp., 490 F.2d 714, 717 (2d Cir. 1974) (per curiam). “[A] federal court has jurisdiction to
enforce a settlement agreement . . . if the dismissal order specifically reserves such authority.”
Scelsa v. City Univ. of N.Y., 76 F.3d 37, 40 (2d Cir. 1996) (citing Kokkonen v. Guardian Life
Ins. Co. of Am., 511 U.S. 375, 381 (1994)). A settlement agreement is interpreted according to
“A repeater is a complication in a mechanical watch that chimes the time on demand by activating a push or a
slide-piece. Different types of repeaters allow the time to be heard to varying degrees of precision; from the simple
quarter-repeater which merely strikes the number of hours and quarters, to the minute repeater which sounds the
time down to the minute using separate tones for hours, quarter-hours, and minutes. Originating before electricity,
they allowed the time to be determined in the dark and they were also used by the visually impaired.” Savoir-Faire:
What is a Minute Repeater, PATEK PHILIPPE & CO., http://www.patek.com/en/company/savoir-faire/minuterepeaters (last visited Oct. 23, 2017).
“general principles of contract law” and “[o]nce entered into . . . is binding and conclusive.”
Powell v. Omnicom, 497 F.3d 124, 128 (2d Cir. 2007). “Pursuant to New York law, to have a
binding settlement agreement, there must be an offer, acceptance, consideration, mutual assent
and intent to be bound.” Delyanis v. Dyna-Empire, Inc., 465 F. Supp. 2d 170, 173 (E.D.N.Y.
2006) (citing Register.com, Inc. v. Verio, Inc., 356 F.3d 393, 427 (2d Cir. 2004)).
Woods timely presented this Court with the parties’ written agreement. (Motion
to Reopen Case and Submission of Settlement Agreement, ECF No. 9, Ex. 2.) This agreement
was executed by Evan Zimmermann, Antiquorum’s CEO, on behalf of Antiquorum. (Settlement
Antiquorum was required to make three separate payments, the final due on
August 30, 2017. If any installment was not paid on time, Antiquorum agreed “to acknowledge
and confess judgment against Antiquorum and in favor of Woods for the entire unpaid balance
together with interest and attorney’s fees of $30,000.” (Settlement § 6.) Antiquorom agreed to
make these payments as consideration for the dismissal of Woods’ action in this Court, as well as
the release of any other past or present claims. (Settlement § 4.)
Antiquorum made its first two payments, indicating its assent to the deal.
(Motion to Enforce Settlement Agreement ¶ 2.) The parties later agreed by email that
Antiquorum could have until September 30, 2017 to make its final payment. At this time,
Zimmermann explicitly acknowledged by email that Antiquorum still owed $100,000. (Motion
to Enforce Settlement Agreement, Ex. 2 at 3.)
In reviewing the settlement agreement, it is clear that the parties entered into an
enforceable contract. The settlement displays offer and acceptance, due consideration, mutual
assent, and an intent to be bound. Woods’ counsel provided Antiquorum with notice of this
pending motion, and Antiquorum failed to provide any opposition. There is no evidence that
Antiquorum did not consent to this settlement or should not be required to pay the full amount
Woods requests that Antiquorum also be required to pay pre-judgment and postjudgment interest. (Motion to Enforce Settlement Agreement ¶¶ 5, 6.) However, the settlement
agreement already provides that should Antiquorum fail to pay any installment on time, it would
be held to “the entire unpaid balance together with interest and attorney’s fees of $30,000.”
(Settlement § 6.) (emphasis added.) In view of this provision, an award of pre-judgment interest
would be entirely redundant. Woods may, however, collect post-judgment interest from the date
final judgment is entered until the date Antiquorum satisfies the judgment, which shall be
calculated “at the rate of nine per centum per annum.” N.Y. C.P.L.R. §§ 5003, 5004.
For the foregoing reasons, Woods’ motion to enforce the settlement is granted.
The Clerk of Court is directed to enter judgment against Antiquorum in the amount of one
hundred and thirty thousand dollars ($130,000) plus any post-judgment interest, and to terminate
the motion pending at ECF No. 12.
Dated: November 6, 2017
New York, New York
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