DeCicco v. Schweizer


– Four days prior to a wedding of Blanche Schweizer to an Italian nobleman, the groom and the bride’s parents conferring money to the bride for as long as both of them should live.
– Couple assigned rights to DeCicco, and he sued the father-in-law, J Schweizer.
– First payment at time of marriage for $2,500. – After tenth payment, no more were made – brought law suit. – Defendant
o Gulinelli and Miss Schweizer were already married, and marriage was merely fulfillment of a legal duty.
 Promise to for A to pay B to induce him to break contract with C is void.
o However, this was not legit, the contract was a voluntary rescission of their engagement – Together though they were free to terminate the engagement or postpone the marriage.
 The consideration for Schweizer’s promise was that they did not terminate the marriage.

Procedural History

– New York Court of Appeals, 1917


– Does the pre-existing contract rule apply to cases where a contractual duty pre-exists but is owed not to the promisor but to a third party?


– Yes, there is a legit contract.


– Pre-existing duty Reasoning – Judge Cardoza o The right to withdraw the marriage was consideration.
o Public policy
o Beginning of promissory estoppel

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