Arthur B. Blackett & others v. Jerrold A. Olanoff, 371 Mass. 714

Court: SUPREME JUDICIAL COURT OF MASSACHUSETTS
Citation: 371 Mass. 714
Parties: ARTHUR B. BLACKETT & others 1 vs. JERROLD OLANOFF (and a companion case 2).
County: Suffolk
Hearing Date: October 7, 1976
Decision Date: January 13, 1977
Judges: HENNESSEY, C.J., BRAUCHER, KAPLAN, & WILKINS, JJ.

Where landlords of a residential building leased to others a nearby building for use as a bar and cocktail lounge with the result that the residential tenants were subjected to loud music and disturbances into the early morning hours and where the landlords had the ability to control the objectionable conditions but failed to do so, the landlords breached the residential tenants' implied warranty of quiet enjoyment. [715-718]

CONTRACT. Writs in the Municipal Court of the City of Boston dated October 3, 1972.

Upon transfer by the defendants to the Housing Court of the City of Boston, the cases were heard by Garrity, J.

Philip S. Lapatin for the plaintiffs.

Sally A. Corwin (Jon C. Mazuy with her) for the defendants.

WILKINS, J. The defendant in each of these consolidated actions for rent successfully raised constructive eviction as a defense against the landlords' claim. The judge found that the tenants were "very substantially deprived" of quiet enjoyment of their leased premises "for a substantial time" (emphasis original). He ruled that the tenants' implied warranty of quiet enjoyment was violated by late evening and early morning music and disturbances coming

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1 Arthur B. Blackett, Charles W. Brown, Third, Konrad Gesner, and Bencion Moskow, trustees of Blue Water Trust, doing business as Commercial Wharf Properties Co. The plaintiffs will be referred to herein as the landlords.