The Real Deal New York

The Met sued for allegedly violating its lease

November 15, 2012 04:00PM

The Met Museum

Two New Yorkers have sued the Metropolitan Museum of Art, claiming the beloved cultural institution violated its lease obligations through fraudulent admission fee practices, Law360 reported.

The Met’s so-called perpetual lease agreement allows the museum to occupy several acres of Central Park along Fifth Avenue from 79th to 85th streets rent-free, as long as it admits the public for free on several days each week, the lawsuit says. The plaintiffs estimate the deal has saved the museum $368 million per year, and a total of $9.4 billion over the last 42 years.

The suit alleges that the museum breached these terms with deceptive marketing and sales tactics that led visitors to buy unnecessary tickets and memberships. The plaintiffs have asked the court to order the Met to inform the public of its right to free admission and also put an end to the marketing practices in question. [Law360] —Hiten Samtani

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