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Law School Case Brief

Lane Mortg. Co. v. Crenshaw - 93 Cal. App. 411 (Dist. Ct. App. 1928)

Rule:

Concretely a power is said to be coupled with an interest when the power forms part of a contract, and is a security for money or for the performance of any act which is deemed valuable, and is generally made irrevocable in terms, or, if not so, is deemed irrevocable in law. To impart an irrevocable quality to a power of attorney in the absence of any express stipulation and as the result of legal principles alone there must coexist with the power an interest in the thing or estate to be disposed of or managed under the power.

Facts:

Plaintiff corporation filed an action for injunctive relief to secure the benefits to which it was allegedly entitled under a written contract and for a declaratory judgment. The corporation contended that it was entitled to the injunctive relief sought based on a written instrument that gave it a power coupled with an interest that made it revocable at will. The superior court entered a judgment in favor of the defendant individuals. Plaintiff appealed.

Issue:

Is an injunction suit proper to prevent the revocation of an agency coupled with an interest?

Answer:

Yes.

Conclusion:

The court held that a power was coupled with an interest when the power formed part of a contract and was a security for money or for the performance of any act which was deemed valuable, and was generally made irrevocable in terms, or, if not so, was deemed irrevocable in law. The power in this case was expressly made irrevocable and expressly tied to the entire transaction in the creation of the relevant leasehold interest.

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