Friday, March 23, 2012

Embry v. Hargadine, McKittrick Dry Goods Co. case brief

Embry v. Hargadine, McKittrick Dry Goods Co.; (Ct of Appeals of Missouri, 1907)
Objective vs. Subjective Approach
  • Facts: Embry was working as a salesman and wanted an employment K. Got what he considered to be an assurance from his boss that he would get one, but was fired instead. He lost the opportunity to go work somewhere else.
  • Issue: did the formation of the K depend on the intention of BOTH parties?
  • Holding: it’s a matter of law whether or not the boss’ words could be understood by a reasonable person as agreeing to form a K.
  • Rule: if a reasonable person would have taken a party’s words to constitute assent to the formation of a K, then that K will be enforceable, even if one party did not intend for there to be a K.
  • Commentary: objective standard. If what D staid would have been taken by a reasonable person to be an employment contract, and P so understood it to be so, it constitutes a valid K.

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