Callano v. Oakwood Park Homes Corp.

Procedural History

–          Supreme Court of NJ.

–          Oakwood is appealing the lower courts judgment of $475 entered towards Callano.


–          Callano planted shrubbery for Pendergast, and he died before he could pay them $500.

–          After Pendergast died, Oakwood sold the estate to someone else for…

–          Callano sued Oakwood for unjust enrichment ($475) and won in the lower courts…retention or payment would be unjust…

–          Oakwood appealed and won…the burden of paying Callano rests on the Pendergast estate.


–          Is Oakwood obligated to pay plaintiffs for the reasonable value of the shrubbery on the theory of quasi-contractual liability?




–          To recover on the theory of quasi-contract the plaintiffs must prove that the defendant was enriched, received a benefit, and that retention of the benefit would be unjust…


–          Common threads of quasi contract.

  • Plaintiff expected remuneration from the defendant at the time the benefit was conferred.
  • Quasi-contracts involve some direct relationship between the parties or a mistake on the part of the person conferring the benefit.
  • Defendant had no dealings with Oakwood and never expected payments from them.
  • Contract was made at the time for the benefit to be conferred to Pendergast, not Oakwood…no issue with Oakwood.
  • Case may be heard on the behalf of Pendergast estate.

****Cannot substitute on promisor or debtor for another****

–          There is also NO contention of fraud on Oakwood’s behalf.


–          Reversed in favor of Oakwood.

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