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Mapping the LawEssays in Memory of Peter Birks$
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Andrew Burrows and Alan Rodger

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780199206551

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199206551.001.0001

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Unjust Enrichment as Absence of Basis: Can English Law Cope?

Unjust Enrichment as Absence of Basis: Can English Law Cope?

(p.363) 19 Unjust Enrichment as Absence of Basis: Can English Law Cope?
Mapping the Law

Gerhard Dannemann

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the new approach adopted by Peter in Unjust Enrichment. In Unjust Enrichment, Peter abandoned unjust factors in favour of an approach which generally calls for the reversal of enrichments which lack a legal basis. If this approach were to be adopted in English law, it would significantly change the way in which unjust enrichment interacts with other areas of law, and contract law in particular. German law points out some of the issues which English law would need to address. The chapter considers three situations: enrichment through execution of non-contractual agreements; enrichment through execution of non-enforceable contracts; and enrichment through execution of ill-founded disputed claims.

Keywords:   German law, unjust enrichment, Peter Birks, non-contractual agreements, non-enforceable contracts, disputed claims, contract law

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