The Powers of Chancery

Marioni v. Roxy Garments Delivery Co., Inc., 417 N.J. Super. 269 (App. Div. 2010).  In this opinion by Judge Fisher, a former Monmouth County Chancery judge, the Appellate Division discusses the broad equitable powers of Chancery judges in shaping relief to fit a particular circumstance.  Equitable remedies, the court said, “are distinguished by their flexibility, their unlimited variety, and their adaptability to circumstances.”  While complimenting the Chancery judge below on his “prodigious efforts” to deal with a factually complex matter, the Appellate Division concluded that the judge had mistakenly given the defendant certain credit for the expense of renovations to a property.  The court found that the defendant was in fact a constructive trustee for the plaintiff, so that the plaintiff should not have had to pay for the renovations.