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Webb v. McGowin

Supreme Court of Alabama
168 So. 199 (1936)


Facts

Joe Webb (plaintiff) was permanently injured when he prevented a workplace accident, which saved J. Greeley McGowin’s life. McGowin promised to pay Webb $15 every two weeks for the rest of Webb's life. McGowin made the payments until his death eight years later. After McGowin died, Floyd and Joseph McGowin (executors) (defendants), the executors of McGowin’s estate, stopped making the payments. Webb sued the executors to enforce McGowin’s promise and recover the unpaid amount due. The executors demurred. The trial court sustained the demurrers, and Webb took a nonsuit. The Court of Appeals of Alabama reversed, holding that the contract was enforceable because the material and substantial benefit conferred on McGowin was sufficient legal consideration for McGowin's promise. The executors filed a petition for writ of certiorari to the Supreme Court of Alabama. [Editor's Note: the Alabama Supreme Court did not discuss the facts of the case. The relevant facts and procedural history are summarized from the opinion of the Court of Appeals of Alabama below in Webb v. Alabama, 168 So. 196 (1935).] 

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Foster, J.)

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