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Bridges v. Hawkesworth

Law Dictionary

Law Dictionary

Featuring Black's Law Dictionary 2nd Ed.
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Property Law Keyed to Cribbet

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Bloomberg Law

Citation. 21 L.J. Q.B. 75 (Queen’s Bench 1851).

Brief Fact Summary. Plaintiff found banknotes on the floor of Defendant’s shop and left the notes with Defendant to return to the proper owner, and, when the notes were unclaimed after three years, asked that the notes be given to Plaintiff, a request which Defendant refused.

Synopsis of Rule of Law. The mere fact that the banknotes were found on the floor of Defendant’s shop was not sufficient for the Defendant to retain possession of the notes against the claim of Plaintiff, the finder.

Facts. Plaintiff was a traveler who conducted business with the Defendant at the shop of Defendant. During one of Plaintiff’s visits, Plaintiff found a parcel of banknotes on the shop floor. Plaintiff gave the banknotes over to Defendant for the purpose of returning the notes to the proper owner. Three years elapsed with no one claiming the notes. Plaintiff then requested that the notes be returned to Plaintiff, which Defendant refused. Plaintiff brought suit in trover. The lower court ruled for the Defendant.

Issue. Does the fact that the notes were found inside Defendant’s shop give him the right to keep them against the claim of the Plaintiff, who found them?

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