Restitution - Non-money benefits
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Test for benefit (two)
- Reprehensible seeking out
Why does Burrows reject free acceptance?
Someone may accept something and yet be indifferent to it; it is not a benefit to them.
Garner's view on non-money benefits
Freedom of choice should be respected. D may have benefitted, but he may not have chosen to pay for the service if given the choice.
Beatson's view on pure services (two)
- They can only be classed as a benefit if they satisfy the exchange value test (prevents D from spending money himself
- Claims for restitution of pure services should be based on 'injurious reliance', not benefit of D
Stoljar's theory for non-money benefits
'Unjust sacrifice' should be used instead of unjust enrichment - sometimes it doesn't matter if D has benefitted, what matters is the time/money/effort spent by C.
Which two commentators advocate the 'unjust sacrifice' approach?
Stoljar and Muir
Unjust sacrifice - the heart of the claim is the sacrifice, the benefit to D (if any) is incidental.
Rowe v Vale of White Horse 2003
- D had been providing sewerage services to C without charging. They then asked for 6y of backpayments.
- C had benefitted - incontrovertible benefit, saving of necessary expense
- No unjust factor - no free acceptance because D did not have an opportunity to refuse the services. He did not have to pay.
Cressman v Coys, further category of benefit suggested
Mance LJ - readily returnable benefit
Chief Constable of the Greater Manchester Police v Wigan Athletic 2008
D did not have to pay for additional policing provided - the free acceptance test was used. D did not freely accept the services because it had been unable to reject them without also rejecting the policing it did want.
Benedetti v Sawiris 2010 - facts
B and S had entered into an agreement for B's services, which was subsequently abandoned. B then performed different services for S, without a contract, and sought a quantum meruit.
Benedetti v Sawiris 2010 - how to value services
- The trial judge had used an offer earlier in the negotiations to value B's work. This was rejected on appeal - the starting point when valuing services is the market rate. This can then be increased or decreased by certain factors.
- Prior agreements could only be used to do this if they had been agreed to by both parties - Arden LJ
What did Virgo say the effect of Benedetti and Sawiris 2010 was?
To create an objective approach to valuation which can only be displaced by a common intention of the parties.
What are the two types of benefit?
Incontrovertible benefit (objective) and subjective benefit (free acceptance test usually used)
What is Birks' definition of incontrovertible benefit?
No reasonable man would say that the defendant was not enriched
What does Birks include in 'incontrovertible benefit'? (two)
- Where D has been saved necessary expenditure
- Where the benefit has been REALISED
What do Goff and Jones include in incontrovertible benefit?
Benefits that are READILY REALISABLE without detriment to D
What is Burrows' test of incontrovertible benefit?
It is reasonably certain that D will realise the benefit in the future
What is Burrows' criticism of Birks' test of incontrovertible benefit?
It is too narrow; it makes the date of the trial crucial
MOD v Ashman 1993
- RAF husband split up with his wife and she stayed living in the RAF provided home (lower rent than market rate) while she was waiting for local authority housing. RAF claimed for trespass, at the market value of the rent.
- She had to pay the price that local authority housing would have been, not the market rate. I.e. she had to pay only THE EXPENSE SHE HAD SAVED.
What are the three tests of incontrovertible benefit?
- Birks - realised benefit
- Goff and Jones - readily realisable benefit
- Burrows - benefit likely to be realised in near future
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