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Citation. 22 Ill.302 Mass. 54, 18 N.E.2d 362 (1938)
Brief Fact Summary. The Plaintiff ran a business, which placed billboards on the sides of buildings. The Defendant agreed to let Plaintiff place a billboard, but then took the billboard down. Facts.
Synopsis of Rule of Law. Where the nature of the parties’ intent in writing and is such that the resulting right of the writing is to create an easement in gross, specific performance may be applied.
On October 9, 1934, Plaintiff obtained a writing from Defendant, who owned a building, to give to Plaintiff, for $25, “the exclusive right and privilege to maintain advertising sign one ten feet by twenty-five feet on wall of building” owned by Defendant for one year with privilege of renewal for four more years, year to year, for the same consideration. The agreement provided that the signs so placed would remain the personal property of Plaintiff. The agreement had on it as a heading “Lease No. —.” The Plaintiff accepted the agreement in writing on November 10, 1934, when he sent the Defendant a check for $25, which Defendant returned. Plaintiff put the sign up anyway and maintained the sign until February 23, 1937, paying $25 in early November for the years of 1935 and 1936, which checks were returned by Defendant. On February 23, 1937, Defendant took down the sign. Thereafter, Plaintiff brought this complaint alleging that the writing was a lease and that Plaintiff was e
ntitled to specific performance. The trial court ruled that the writing was a contract to give a license and ordered specific performance with damages and costs. The Defendant appealed. Plaintiff tendered $25 for renewal on November 10, 1937, but Defendant refused the money. Issue.
What is the legal character of the writing between Plaintiff and Defendant?