Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Boone v. Coe case brief

Boone v. Coe case brief summary
154 S.W. 900 (Ky. App. 1913)

Plaintiff lessees sought review of a judgment from the Monroe Circuit Court (Kentucky), which was entered in favor of defendant lessor in the lessees' action for damages against the lessor regarding his alleged breach of a parol contract between the parties for the lease of his farm in Texas. The lessor's demurrer to the lessees' petition was sustained, and the petition was dismissed.

The parties' agreement provided that if the lessees would leave their homes and businesses in Kentucky, the lessor would furnish them with a house and the necessary materials to live on and cultivate the lessor's farm in Texas for the period of one year, commencing from the date the lessees arrived in Texas. The lessees agreed, but when they arrived in Texas, the lessor failed to have the house and materials ready and refused to grant the lessees access to the farm. The lessees brought an action for damages, and the circuit court entered judgment in favor of the lessor.


  • The lessees appealed, and the court affirmed, holding that because the lease was for a longer term than one year from the making thereof and was not in writing, the agreement was unenforceable under the Kentucky statute of frauds and thus, the lessor had the legal right to decline to carry it out. 
  • The court determined that the lessees merely sustained a loss and that as the lessor received no benefit, there was no implied obligation on the lessor's part to pay for such loss. 
  • The court concluded that a contrary rule espoused in McDaniel v. Hutchinson was against the weight of authority and was thus overruled.

The court affirmed the circuit court's judgment in favor of the lessor in the lessees' action against him to recover damages for the lessor's alleged breach of a parol contract between the parties for the lease of a farm.

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