Katz v. Danny Dare, Inc., 610 S.W.2d 121 (1980)

Case Name: Katz v. Danny Dare, Inc.
Plaintiff/Appellant: I.G. Katz
Defendant/Appellee: Danny Dare, Inc.
Citation: 610 S.W.2d 121 (1980)

Issue: Whether the plaintiff relied to his detriment on the promise of the defendant to pay him a pension for as long as he lived.

Key Facts: Katz employed by Dare, Inc. and was the brother-in-law of the president. Katz was earning $23,000. The president continually sought for Katz to retire and eventually can to an agreement after 13 months. Dare said that it would pay Katz a $13,000 pension so long as he lived. Three years later, Dare sent a check for half the normal amount because Katz had begun working part-time and one day a week at Dare. The defendant stated that Katz would have been fired had he not elected to retire so Katz could not apply the doctrine of promissory estoppel.

Procedural History: Judgment was entered in favor of the defendant. The trial court said that since Katz had the choice of accepting retirement and a pension or being fired, that it could not be said that he suffered any detriment when he elected to retire.

Judgment: Reversed and remanded with directions to enter judgment in all suits in favor of Katz for the amount of unpaid pension.

Reasoning:

The elements of promissory estoppel are present:
1. A promise of a pension to Katz
2. His detrimental reliance on the promise (he would not have retired, he was no longer employable by the time Dare stopped paying him, and he failed to go out and obtain other employment)
3. Injustice can only be avoided by enforcing that promise

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