Bailey v. West

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Bailey v. West
Court Rhode Island Supreme Court
Citation 105 R.I. 61
249 A.2d 414
Date decided January 22, 1969


In 1962, Mr. West purchased a racehorse at Belmont Park, Elmont, New York. He shipped the horse to Suffolk Downs, East Boston, Massachusetts.

Upon the horse's arrival in Massachusetts, the trainer found the animal was lame (unable to move normally). So, West ordered the horse to be shipped back to the seller by van. When the seller refused to accept the horse to be delivered, the van driver delivered the horse to the farm of Mr. Bailey. After 4 years, the horse was sold in 1966 to a 3rd party.

Bailey at the farm was aware of the dispute regarding the horse's ownership. West notified the seller & Bailey (where the horse was being fed) that he hadn't requested the horse to be maintained at the Bailey farm.

Procedural History

Bailey sued West for the reasonable value of the services rendered in connection with the horse from 1962 to 1966.

The Superior Court found in favor of Bailey following a bench trial. The court found that there was an implied-in-fact contract to board the horse that continued until West notified Bailey that West was no longer responsbile for the horse.


Can a contract be implied in fact based on the parties' acts or conduct when the parties themselves don't mutually agree & don't intend to make a promise?


No. A contract can't be implied in fact when there is no mutual agreement & no intent to make a promise.




Judge Paolino: Bailey failed to prove that a contract implied in fact was created.

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