Unjust enrichment is a theme common to most restitution cases in the United States. The theory of recovery is based on a justice principle the disgorgement of an unfairly obtained gain. The goal, in general, is to require the defendant to give up his gain rather than to compensate the plaintiff for a loss, as in a tort case, or to substitute damages for an unfulfilled expectancy, as in a contract case. This paper examines some of the issues that surround the measurement of the unjust enrichment and the defendant's liability. There are a number of straightforward rules for the calculation of damages for breach of contract or for trespass and the focus is clearly on what the plaintiff has lost by reason of the defendant's actions. The rules for the calculation of the defendant's unjust enrichment are not so clear, and, as several cases demonstrate, lack of clarity may result in under or over compensation.
Restitution, Contract, Unjust enrichment
Law, Society and Governance
Sydney Law Review
Sydney Law School
Measuring the Unjust Enrichment in a Restitution. (1989). Sydney Law Review. 12, (1), 76-95. Research Collection School Of Law.
Available at: http://ink.library.smu.edu.sg/sol_research/2132
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.