Boone v. Coe Case Brief

Summary of Boone v. Coe


Plaintiff: Boone

Defendant: Coe

Facts: Defendant made a verbal contract with plaintiff that if the latter take his family, horses and wagons, moving from Kentuchy to Texas to take charge of, manage and cultivate same in wheat, corn and cotton for the twelve months next following plaintiffs’ arrival at defendant’s farm, he would offer dwelling, stock and grain barn to be used by plaintiffs. After 55 days trip, plaintiff arrived Texas and was told defendant had changed the mind. Nothing was reday for the plaintiff.

Plaintiff sued for the damages of $1,387.80.

Issue: Whether the plaintiff can recover the expenses incurred and time lost on the faith of a contract that is unenforceable under the statute of frauds?

Reasoning: The statute of Frauds provides that “No action shall be brought to charge any person upon any contract for the sale of real estate, or any lease thereof, for longer term than one year”. This case was within the statute and so the contract is unenforceable.

The statute of Frauds also provides that the vendee of land under a parol contract is entitled to recover any portion of the purchase money he may have paid, and is also entitled to compensation for improvements subject to the vendor actually receives some benefits fromthe acts of part performance. In this case, plaintiff suffered damages while defendant received no benefits. So defendant has no obligation to pay.

Holding: Judgment is for the defendant.

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