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Sufficiency Of Consideration Essay

1686 words - 7 pages

Essentially, consideration is one of the sixth elements of contract which will be discussed in this essay. According to Lord Pollock, in Dunlop v Selfridge Ltd, consideration is ‘an act or forbearance of one party or the promise thereof, is the price for which the promise of the other is bought, and the promise thus given for value is enforceable,’ Some elements of consideration which also will be discussed are it must be sufficient in the eyes of law, it need not be adequate, it must not so vague, it can be present or future, but cannot be past.
In this essay, I am going to discuss about consideration needs only be sufficient, not adequate and to consider whether there is a sufficient ...view middle of the document...

The second part is consideration need not be in the form of money. It can be in action form. But, intangibles such as emotions (love, affection, attention) are not sufficient. Promise not to sue, or to abandon a claim is good consideration, with providing certain conditions are satisfied. It can be found in Wigan v Edwards, Edward bought a house from Wigan. After signing a contract, Edward found some defects on that house. Wigan intends to rectify those defects. But, before the rectification done, Edward sued him. Wigan argued that he is not obliged to rectify anything since Edward had sign the contract. Therefore, because the buyer did not want to continue the settlement because of those defects, it can be done by the compromise.
The third part is consideration cannot be so vague. It must have certainty. For example, White v Bluett, the son had a debt to his father, who had passed away. He was sued by the executor, but he said that his father had promise not to extend his debts, as long as he stopped to complain that he had been treated unfairly compare to his brothers. Firstly, the court stated that the son did not have legal right to complain. The son’s promise was too vague and did not constitute such consideration as the law would recognise to bind the father to his promise.
The last part is moral values are not sufficient. A mere moral obligation was not enforceable at law. The case of this principle is Eastwood v Kenyon. Eastwood spent money on Sarah’s education and her estate. Then, she promised to repay Eastwood and later taken by Kenyon. But, he failed to pay, Eastwood sued. The court held that that payments already done before Kenyon made those promises. Therefore, it was past consideration and could not support the promises.
In addition, nominal consideration is sufficient because it does not have to be equal value. Even, ₵1 was nominal consideration. Nominal consideration has the form of a bargain, but not the substance of one. For instance, Thomas v Thomas, before Mr.Thomas died, he had asked his executor to permit his wife to occupy his house. The executor requires the wife to pay £1 per annum. But the executor changed his mind and ejected her. The wife sued. Consequently, she succeeded. Although she just paid £1 per annum, that was enough to make the agreement enforceable.
Moreover, there are two situations in the pre-existing duty: legal obligation and contractual obligation. Existing legal obligation means if the promisee is obliged by law to do any certain duty, which asked by the promisor, there is no consideration for the promise. In general rule, pre-existing duty is doing something which you are already supposed to do, either legally or contractually is not sufficient. Legal obligation situation was held in Collins v Godefroy that Collins had been asked by Godefroy to give evidence. Godefroy promised to pay him six guineas for that but he failed to pay and Collins sued. The court argued that Collins just did what the...

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