Brief Fact Summary. The Callanos (Plaintiffs) operated a plant nursery and Oakwood’s park (Defendant) were constructing a house to be sold to Plaintiffs. Pursuant to a contract with Plaintiffs, Defendants planted shrubbery on the lot. Plaintiff did not pay the invoice and died shortly thereafter.
Synopsis of Rule of Law. A Plaintiff cannot use quasi-contract or theory of unjust enrichment to substitute a known promisor or debtor for another. Quasi-contract will only be applied where no other remedy exists.
Issue. Whether Defendant must pay the plaintiffs for the shrubbery based on an implied or quasi-contract theory that Defendant was unjustly enriched.
Held. Defendant is not the proper party to pay for the shrubs and is not liable. The Callanos remedy is against Plaintiff’s estate since they did contract and expect payment from Plaintiff. Quasi-contract will only be used where there is no other remedy. Here, there was properly an action in contract against Plaintiff’s estate.
Liability will only be imposed if the plaintiff expected remuneration from the defendant, or if the true facts were known to the plaintiff, he would have expected remuneration from the defendant, at the time the benefit was conferred.View Full Point of Law