Morrow v. First National Bank of Hot Springs

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Morrow v. First National Bank of Hot Springs
Court Supreme Court of Arkansas
Citation 261 Ark. 568, 550 S.W. 429 (1977)
Date decided 1977


Plaintiff had a coin collection worth a good amount of money. He had metal cabinets built in his house to store the coins safely. He finally reserved 3 large safety deposit boxes at defendant’s bank, paying $25 for each box. It was expected that the boxes would become available in 30 to 60 days, and he explained to the bank that he wanted the boxes by September 1 because he son was leaving for college. The employee of the bank promised to notify Morrow as soon as the boxes were available. On September 4 coins were stolen from the plaintiff’s home worth around $32,000. He later found that the boxes at the bank had become available on August 30.

Procedural History

Summary judgment in favor of the bank, to which the plaintiff appeals.


Whether plaintiff may recover consequential damages for a breach of a contract that are so largely out of proportion to the consideration agreed to be paid for the services rendered under the contract.


Judgment affirmed in favor of the bank.


The “tacit agreement test” says that the plaintiff must prove more than the defendant’s mere knowledge that a breach of contract will entail special damages to the plaintiff. It must also appear that the defendant at least tacitly agreed to assume responsibility.

To make another party for special damages when they are out of proportion to the consideration, he must know that the person he contracts with reasonably believes that he accepts the contract with the special condition attached to it.