Adequacy

Consideration must be sufficient but does not have to be adequate.

The two basic requirements of a contract are consideration and mutual assent.  Consideration can be described as what you give up in the deal for what you get out of the deal. Consideration must be sufficient but does not have to be adequate Thomas v Thomas (1842), 'A court will not look into the adequacy of consideration or the reasons for the bargain if there is a real bargain between the parties.

Consideration is considered sufficient if it is real (White v Bluett (1853)); - Mr Bluett lent some money to his son, on Mr Bluett's death his executors sued the son to return the money. Mr Bluett's son said his father had said he needn't repay the money if he stopped complaining about the way his property was to be distributed between his children on his death. The judge held there was no consideration for any discharge of the obligation to repay the sum -'The son had no right to complain, for the father might make what distribution of his property he liked; and the son's abstaining from doing what he had no right to do can be no consideration.'

Consideration is also considered sufficient if it is tangible (Ward v Byham [1956]) and has some discernible value (Chappell & Co Ltd v Nestle Co Ltd (1959)).

Consideration does not need to be adequate but it must be of some value.

 

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