Percy and Darby have entered into a verbal contract that is in writing. This contract involves the sale, transportation, and installment of a gazebofrom Darby to Percy. The precise duties and obligations are completely specified, with no ambiguity, and Darby has admitted to breach. (Brinson &. Radcliffe, 1999). While Darby has already admitted to the breach, his claim that damages are adequate is anything but adequate. Specific performance is absolutely necessary.
It is crucial to understand that in cases involving unique or special property, no monetary value can be accurately assigned. This was how the case of Severson v. Elberon Elevator, Inc. was ruled. Severson was promised the ability to purchase real estate from Elberon Elevator, but Elberon Elevator breached this contract. The court came to the rightful decision that having Elberon merely pay damages would not be enough because the promised real estate was uniquely situated to Severson’s needs. specific action would be required. (Iowa Supreme Court, 1977).
Similarly, Percy was promised a unique piece of property that was uniquely situated to needs. Darby agreed by contract to sell Percy this one of a kind, hand-crafted gazebo that happens to be well-situated for Percy’s hilly backyard. There are no other gazebos like it. no amount of money that Darby paid in damages could buy Percy what he was promised the ability to purchase. Darby also agreed by contract to move and install the gazebo into Percy’s yard. No matter how much money Darby paid to Percy in damages, it has been clearly established that there are no other parties willing to undertake this installation. Due to the unique nature of the gazebo and rare willingness Darby showed to install it, Darby fully owes Percy specific performance.
Those misguidedly in favor of the defendant, Darby, may point to the case of Yonan v. Oak Park Federal Savings, but they do so in error. In this case the court ruled that the specific performance involving the replacement of a 4,000 foot square building with a 6,000 foot square building would be too much of a burden on the court to oversee or enforce. (Illinois Court of Appeals, 1975). Because enforcement would be needed to ensure the quality of the specific performance, and in this case the specific performance would probably take an extended amount of time to occur, it is understandable that the burden of enforcement would disproportionately outweigh the benefits of specific performance. (The American Law Institute, 1981). However, this is absolutely not the case for Percy v. Darby. There is substantial evidence to suggest that the transportation and installment of the promised gazebo would take just one day, which is hardly a burden in terms of supervision or enforcement.
Other misguided supporters of Darby may be mistakenly fixated on the case of Goldblatt Bros., Inc. v. Addison Green Meadows, Inc. In this case the court deemed specific performance unnecessary due to the inability of the plaintiff to give evidence of any damages incurred from Addison Green Meadows providing less than 1,000 parking spaces. This is irrelevant to the case between Percy and Darby because parking spaces have an obvious value in that they provide a place for potential customers to park, and it was found that the less than 1,000 spaces already available were not being filled by customers anyways. (Illinois Court of Appeals, 1972). Unlike the case of Goldblatt v. Addison Green Meadows, the gazebo that Darby promised via contract to Percy is valuable in a way that does not involve monetary profit for the plaintiff. Specific performance is the appropriate course of action to solve the dispute between Percy and Darby.
Based on the aforementioned findings, it is clear without any doubt that Darby must be held accountable for his breach of contract by means of specific action. Although Darby offered monetary damages for the admitted breach, the uniqueness of the promised gazebo with installation constitutes something that money cannot repair. Evidence prevails to demand the necessity of specific performance in the case of Percy v. Darby.
American Law Institute. (1981). Restatement (Second) of Contracts. The American Law Institute.
Brinson, D. &. Radcliffe, M. (1998). Contracts Law. DLA Piper US LLP. Retrieved online 6 October, 2008 at http://library.findlaw.com/1999/Jan/1/241463.html from FindLaw.
Illinois Court of Appeals. Goldblatt Bros., Inc. v. Addison Green Meadows, Inc. 8 Ill. App. 3d 490, 290 N.E. 2d 715 (1972).
Illinois Court of Appeals. Yonan v. Oak Park Federal Savings. 27 Ill. App. 3d 967, 326 N.E. 2d 773 (1975).
Iowa Supreme Court. Severson v. Elberon Elevators, Inc. 250 N.W. 2d 417 (1977)