Kirksey v. Kirksey

Supreme Court of Alabama, 1845.

8 Ala. 131.

Dawson, pp. 244-245


Facts: The defendant promised the plaintiff a place to live.The plaintiff abandoned her current home and moved in with the defendant.After two years, the defendant booted her out.The trial court awarded the plaintiff $200.


Issue: Was the defendantís promise legally enforceable?


Rule: A purely gratuitous promise shall not be enforced.


Analysis: The majority finds that this promise was just a gift promise.The opinion itself disagrees, however, and presages a change in the law that would develop fully in the twentieth century: reliance on a promise could constitute either consideration or an independent ground for enforcement.


Conclusion: The judgment of the trial court was reversed and the plaintiff got nothing.


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