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Contracts Keyed to Summers
Davis v. Jacoby
Citation:1 Cal. 2d 370, 34 P.2d 1026
ProfessorMelissa A. Hale
CaseCast™ – "What you need to know"
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*Case Brief Anatomy includes: Brief Prologue, Complete Case Brief, Brief Epilogue
- The Brief Prologue provides necessary case brief introductory information and includes:
- Topic: Identifies the topic of law and where this case fits within your course outline.
- Parties: Identifies the cast of characters involved in the case.
- Procedural Posture & History: Shares the case history with how lower courts have ruled on the matter.
- Case Key Terms, Acts, Doctrines, etc.: A case specific Legal Term Dictionary.
- Case Doctrines, Acts, Statutes, Amendments and Treatises: Identifies and Defines Legal Authority used in this case.
- The Case Brief is the complete case summarized and authored in the traditional Law School I.R.A.C. format. The Pro case brief includes:
- Brief Facts: A Synopsis of the Facts of the case.
- Rule of Law: Identifies the Legal Principle the Court used in deciding the case.
- Facts: What are the factual circumstances that gave rise to the civil or criminal case? What is the relationship of the Parties that are involved in the case. Review the Facts of this case here:
Rupert and Blanche Whitehead (collectively the “Whiteheads”) were a married couple with no children and they lived in California. They had a close and loving relationship with Blanche’s niece, Caro (co-plaintiff), who they often referred to as their daughter. After Caro married Frank Davis (co-plaintiff) (collectively “the Davises”) and moved to Canada, the couple still frequently visited and corresponded with the Whiteheads. As the Whiteheads got older, they both suffered from deteriorating health. After Blanche was hospitalized, on April 12th, Rupert wrote Caro a letter that stated, if she came to live with him and Blanche and cared for them, then Caro “will inherit everything.” On February 14th, Frank received the letter. After Caro and Frank discussed the letter, Frank immediately wrote a reply letter accepting the offer. Frank’s letter, however, was lost in the mail. On April 22nd, Rupert committed suicide. Caro and Frank immediately went to California and they cared for Blanche until she died on May 30th. After the Whiteheads’ deaths, Caro discovered that their wills devised their property to Rupert’s nephews, Geoff Doubble and Rupert Ross Whitehead (defendants). The wills made no mention of Caro and Frank. Caro sued on the ground that Rupert had assumed a contractual obligation to make a will where she would “inherit everything.” The trial court found that there was an offer to contract based on Rupert’s letter that could only be accepted by performance and could not be accepted by a promise to perform. The trial court also found that the offer was revoked by Rupert’s death before performance.
- Issue(s): Lists the Questions of Law that are raised by the Facts of the case.
- Holding: Shares the Court's answer to the legal questions raised in the issue.
- Concurring / Dissenting Opinions: Includes valuable concurring or dissenting opinions and their key points.
- Reasoning and Analysis: Identifies the chain of argument(s) which led the judges to rule as they did.
- The Brief Prologue closes the case brief with important forward-looking discussion and includes:
- Policy: Identifies the Policy if any that has been established by the case.
- Court Direction: Shares where the Court went from here for this case.