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.

 

Back to Reliance on a Promise

Back to Casebook Notes