Quimbee logo
DMCA.com Protection Status
From our private database of 17,300+ case briefs...

Fields v. Michael

Court of Appeal of California
205 P.2d 402 (1949)


Mrs. Fields (plaintiff) and W.C. Fields were married from 1900 until his death in 1946. All of the assets owned by Mr. Fields from 1900 onward were acquired during the marriage and were community- property assets. Although Mr. Fields had deserted Mrs. Fields several years into their marriage and did not share information with her regarding his financial affairs or any gifts, the parties remained legally married until Mr. Fields’s death. After Mr. Fields’s death, Ms. Michael (defendant) was qualified as the executrix of his estate. Mrs. Fields filed a claim against her husband’s estate seeking to recover one-half of the value of various gifts and transfers Mr. Fields had made during his lifetime to 10 known and six unknown recipients at a total value of $482,450.00. The claim was denied. Mrs. Fields then filed this claim against the estate, stating that, because the recipients of the lifetime gifts by Mr. Fields had either spent the money or had disappeared, the estate was the only source from which Mrs. Fields could recover the $241,225.00, which amounted to her one-half interest in the unauthorized gifts made by Mr. Fields during their marriage.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Shinn, J.)

What to do next…

  1. Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.

    You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 457,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.

  2. Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.

    Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.

Here's why 457,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:

  • Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 17,300 briefs, keyed to 984 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
  • The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
  • Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
  • Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.

Questions & Answers

Have a question about this case?

Sign up for a free 7-day trial and ask it

Sign up for a FREE 7-day trial