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Wilcox Co. v. Bouramas

OPINION FILED JUNE 21, 1979.

THE WILCOX COMPANY, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,

v.

STELLA BOURAMAS ET AL., DEFENDANTS-APPELLEES.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. ARTHUR L. DUNNE, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE ROMITI DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

The plaintiff has appealed from the trial court's refusal to vacate an arbitrator's award denying its claim for a broker's fee. On appeal it claims the arbitrator exceeded his powers in considering the question of dual agency and that it was denied an opportunity to present evidence on this issue. We find that the plaintiff's contentions are without merit and affirm.

The plaintiff and the defendant, Stella Bouramas, on July 1, 1975, entered into an agreement under which the plaintiff was to act as an exclusive agent to sell the defendants' property. The contract also provided that any controversy arising out of or relating to the contract would be settled by arbitration. On July 7, 1976, the plaintiff filed suit against both defendants alleging that Bouramas in entering into the agreement had acted both for herself and for Demos, that the plaintiff had, in September 1975, obtained a purchaser willing to accept the defendants' terms, but that the defendants rejected the contract executed by the purchaser and terminated the agency. The plaintiff claimed it was entitled to a commission of $18,000. Subsequently, however, the plaintiff decided it preferred to arbitrate its claim against Bouramas and filed a demand for arbitration which read in part as follows:

"Named claimant, a party to an arbitration agreement contained in a written contract, dated July 1, 1975, providing for arbitration, hereby demands arbitration thereunder.

(attach arbitration clause or quote hereunder)

Any controversy or claim arising out of or relating to this contract, or the breach thereof, shall be settled by arbitration in accordance with the rules of the American Arbitration Association, and judgment upon the award rendered by the Arbitrator may be entered in any Court having jurisdiction thereof.

NATURE OF DISPUTE:

Claimants are realtors claiming Brokerage Commission arising out of the Contract referred to above. Claimants provided a person who is ready, willing and able to purchase Respondent's property under terms agreeable to Respondent. Respondent has refused to pay Brokerage Commission.

CLAIM OR RELIEF SOUGHT: (amount, if any)

$18,000.00."

On November 29, 1976, the arbitrator entered a written award which stated:

"1. The claim of The Wilcox Company against Stella Bouramas is denied.

2. The administrative fee of the American Arbitration Association shall be ...


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