Chapter 10 Consideration

Consideration– exchange of benefits and detriments by the parties to an agreement.

benefit– something that a party was not previously entitled to recieve.

detriment– any loss suffered.

I. Types of detriments:

  1. Giving up something you have a legal right to posses
  2. A promise to do something
  3. forbearance– not doing something that you have to legal right to do

II. Agreements without consideration

  1. Promise to make a gift (can not be taken back)
  2. Promise to obey the law
  3. Pre-existing duty (Dog Catcher)

III. Past Consideration – can not ask for consideration of things that have occured in the past (lawyers, services)

  1. promise to attend a social event
    • there is no valid consideration

IV. Adequacy of Consideration (fair, enough, fulfills)

  1. generally courts do not get involved in disputes about the value of consideration
  2. Unconscionable– so inadequate that it might be considered fraud or deceit

V. Promises that are enforceable that lack consideration

  1. Pledges and subscriptions
  2. Promissory Estoppel

Promise to make a gift-

  • gift- something given freely, for no consideration
  • cannot force its return
  • promise to make a gift is not enforceable and does not constitute a contract

Promise to obey the law-

  • everyone is obligated to obey the law, a promise to do so is no detriment

Preexisting duty-

  • If a person is already under a legal duty to do something, a promise to do that same thing does not furnish consideration

Past Consideration-

  • giving or exchanging benefits and detriments by the parties must take place when the contract is made.

Illusory Promise-

  • illusory- have a false appearance

Promise to Attend a Social Engagement-


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