LOGAN – A Fairfield County resident is suing a Pickaway County resident over a proposed sale of land worth more than half a million dollars, claiming the seller withdrew from the deal, violating the sales contract.
At issue, approximately 20 acres of land in the Township of Benton. According to a Dec. 17 complaint filed in the Hocking County Common Plea Court, the owner, Terry Thompson of Circleville, entered into a contract in November 2019, agreeing to sell the property to Cris Krista of Pickerington for $ 575,000.
Under the terms of the contract, Krista was to pay Thompson $ 1,000 on the first of each month, effective December 1, 2019. The balance of the sale price had to be paid by December 1, 2021, or the contract would be void.
In early 2021, according to the lawsuit, Thompson “began to voice concerns about his capital gains tax liability” after Joe Biden was inaugurated president. In the summer of 2021, Thompson expressed interest in organizing what is known in the Internal Revenue Code as a Section 1031 transaction.
According to an IRS fact sheet, a 1031 transaction allows a person who realizes a financial gain from the sale of a business or investment property to defer paying taxes on the gain, if they reinvest the proceeds of the sale in a similar good as part of a qualification as – nice trade.
Krista’s legal complaint states that Thompson told Krista he hired a Columbus law firm to set up a 1031 transaction.
In October 2020, according to the lawsuit, Krista contacted Thompson through legal counsel to inquire about the closing of the sale of the land. Thompson responded by email, again speaking of a 1031 deal. Then, during a face-to-face meeting between the two sides in November, Thompson again indicated that he was still working on such an arrangement.
When Krista contacted Thompson through a lawyer on December 1 for closing instructions, the prosecution alleges that Thompson signaled he was terminating the sales contract because it had expired.
Krista alleges that this constitutes a breach of contract and that Krista is entitled to a court order compelling Thompson to proceed with the sale of the property.
In addition, Krista seeks compensatory damages of at least $ 25,000, punitive damages of up to three times the compensatory damages, and attorney fees.