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Law School Case Brief

I. & I. Holding Corp. v. Gainsburg - 276 N.Y. 427, 12 N.E.2d 532 (1938)

Rule:

An invitation or request to carry on certain work need not be expressed in the subscription agreement; it may be implied. Nor need a request to the promisee to perform the services be expressed in the instrument; it may be implied

Facts:

Appellant Gainsburg filed an action to recover the amount of the charitable pledge that he signed and delivered to Beth Israel Hospital Association primarily to aid and assist in his humanitarian work, and in consideration of the promises of others contributing for the same purposes. Respondent pledge holder claimed that the subscription agreement constituted an enforceable obligation. The lower court ruled in favor of Appellant but it was reversed on appeal. Appellant sought review.

Issue:

Is the subscription agreement stating that it is made to aid and assist a hospital in carrying on its humanitarian work binding and enforceable upon the subscriber?

Answer:

Yes

Conclusion:

The appellate court affirmed and ruled that the agreement was an offer to contract. When the hospital association acted upon the offer, liability was incurred, and the pledge became enforceable. Moreover, the hospital association was not required to do any particular activity in order to create an enforceable agreement. The fact that the hospital association relied on the promise was sufficient to bind the pledgee. The court also ruled that the pledge was properly assigned to the pledge holder as the applicable law did not preclude the assignment of a promise to make a charitable contribution.

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