27 Ala. App. 82
SYNOPSIS: Plaintiff appealed from a judgment of the Circuit Court, Butler County (Alabama), which sustained the defendants' demurrers to plaintiff's action for unpaid installments on an alleged contract made when plaintiff was permanently injured while saving promisor's life.
-The plaintiff was permanently injured while saving the promisor's life.
-The promisor agreed to pay plaintiff a monetary amount every two weeks during the remainder of plaintiff's life.
-The promisor complied with this agreement up to the time of his death.
-Plaintiff brought a complaint against defendants, the executors of the deceased promisor's estate, to enforce the promise and to continue to receive payments.
-The lower court granted defendants' demurrer to the complaint.
On appeal, the court reversed, holding that the contract was enforceable because the injury to the plaintiff was sufficient legal consideration for the promisor's agreement to pay.
-Where the promisee cares for, improves, and preserves the property of the promisor, though done without his request, it is sufficient consideration for the promisor’s subsequent agreement to pay for the service, because of the material benefit received.
Restatement s. 86. Promise for benefit received.
1) A promise made in recognition of a benefit previously received by the promisor from the promisee is binding to the extent necessary to prevent injustice.
2) A promise is not binding under Subsection (1).
a) if the promisee conferred the benefit as a gift or for other reasons the promisor has not been unjustly enriched; or
b) to the extent that its value is disproportionate to the benefit.
OUTCOME: The court reversed and remanded the case holding that the contract was enforceable because the injury to the plaintiff in saving the promisor's life was sufficient legal consideration to enforce the promise to pay.
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