Court can’t screw with stip

CPLR R. 2104

Genger v Genger, 2011 NY Slip Op 01357 (App. Div., 1st 2011)

While recognizing that, pursuant to the stipulation, plaintiff is entitled to further audits as to the completeness and accuracy of the marital assets and liabilities contained on the marital balance sheet as of January 31, 2002 and valued as of October 26, 2004, the court impermissibly restricted the scope of these audits, essentially rewriting the stipulation by imposing additional terms (see Matter of Salvano v Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith, 85 NY2d 173, 182 [1995]). The stipulation is patently unambiguous and clearly evinces the parties' intent (see Chimart Assoc. v Paul, 66 NY2d 570, 574 [1986]). It contains no restriction or limitation on the scope of the audits. The court was not at liberty to alter or change any of the provisions of the stipulation without the consent of both parties (see Leffler v Leffler, 50 AD2d 93, 95 [1975], affd 40 NY2d 1036 [1976]).

Defendant is bound by the contents of the stipulation (see Da Silva v Musso, 53 NY2d 543, 550 [1981]). His assertions are insufficient to rebut "the heavy presumption that a deliberately prepared and executed written instrument manifested the true intention of the parties" (Merrick v Merrick, 181 AD2d 503 [1992] [internal quotation marks and citation omitted]).

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