Clark's Administratrix v. Campbell

Decision Date12 January 1926
Citation212 Ky. 341
PartiesClark's Administratrix v. Campbell.
CourtUnited States State Supreme Court — District of Kentucky

1. Bastards — Promise of Father to Mother of Illegitimate Child to Provide for Child Out of Estate Unenforceable. — A promise by a father to the mother of his illegitimate child to provide for child out of his estate is without consideration and cannot be enforced.

2. Bastards — Father's Promise to Provide for Illegitimate Child, in Consideration of Mother's Agreement Not to Prosecute for Seduction, Held Void. — A promise by a father to provide for his illegitimate child out of his estate, made in consideration of mother's agreement not to prosecute father on charge of seduction, is contrary to public policy, and void.

3. Bastards — Promise by Father to Provide for Illegitimate Child in Consideration of Mother's Agreement Not to Bring Bastardy Proceedings Held Valid. — Promise by father to provide for his illegitimate child out of his estate, in consideration of mother's agreement not to institute bastardy proceedings against him, is valid and enforceable.

4. Bastards — Evidence Held to Present Jury Question Whether Father Promised to Support Child in Consideration of Agreement Not to Bring Bastardy Proceedings. — Evidence held to present jury question whether father promised mother of his illegitimate child to provide for child out of his estate, in consideration of mother's agreement not to institute bastardy proceedings against him.

Appeal from Jackson Circuit Court.

W.E. BEGLEY and THOS. D. TINSLEY for appellant.

LEWIS & LEWIS for appellee.

OPINION OF THE COURT BY JUDGE CLAY.

Affirming.

Alleging that he was the illegitimate son of W.H. Clark, and that Clark breached a contract whereby he agreed with plaintiff's mother that if she would refrain from instituting bastardy proceedings against him he would support plaintiff and make suitable provision for him out of his estate, plaintiff brought this suit to recover damages. From a judgment in his favor for $5,000.00, the administratrix has appealed.

The facts shown by the evidence are these: Many years ago W.H. Clark taught school near the home of John Campbell, who had a young daughter named Margaret. She and Clark were sweethearts, and it was not long until they became engaged. As a result of the intimacy J.C. Campbell was begotten. Before the child was born she notified Clark of her condition, and he moved to Missouri. About a year later, and before the child was three years of age, he returned to Kentucky. She then informed him of her intention to institute bastardy proceedings against him. He said that if she would not law him he would keep the baby and her and make him a lawful heir just like the rest of the family. Clark never denied that he was plaintiff's father, but admitted the relation on several occasions and gave him money now and then. When Clark died he had an estate of about $100,000.00, which he devised to his widow and daughter.

It is the rule in this state that the mere promise of a father to the mother of his illegitimate child to provide for the child out of his estate is without consideration and can not be enforced, and that a similar promise made in consideration of the mother's agreement not to prosecute the...

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4 cases
  • Moore's Adm'r v. Wagers' Adm'r
    • United States
    • Kentucky Court of Appeals
    • 22 mars 1932
    ... ... Law Rep. 884; Steele v. Crawford, 197 Ky. 798, 248 ... S.W. 197; Clark's Adm'x v. Campbell, 212 Ky ... 341, 279 S.W. 327. But a promise made by the father of an ... illegitimate child in ... ...
  • Schumm v. Berg
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals Court of Appeals
    • 14 novembre 1950
    ...S.E. 881; Conley v. Cable, 198 N.C. 298, 151 S.E. 645; Thayer v. Thayer, 189 N.C. 502, 127 S.E. 553, 39 L.R.A. 428; Clark's Adm'x v. Campbell, 212 Ky. 341, 279 S.W. 327; Lewis v. Creech's Adm'r, 162 Ky. 763, 173 S.W. 133; Sybilla v. Connally, 66 Ga.App. 678, 18 S.E.2d 783, in support of his......
  • Mayfield v. Cupp
    • United States
    • Kentucky Court of Appeals
    • 14 novembre 1933
    ... ... Steele v. Crawford, 197 Ky. 798, 248 S.W. 197; ... Clark's Adm'x v. Campbell, 212 Ky. 341, 279 ... S.W. 327; Smith v. Wagers' Administrators, 238 ... Ky. 609, 38 S.W.2d 685, ... ...
  • Perry v. Lambert's Guardian
    • United States
    • Kentucky Court of Appeals
    • 5 décembre 1933
    ... ... A. (N. S.) 597; Steele v ... Crawford, 197 Ky. 798, 248 S.W. 197; Clark's ... Adm'x v. Campbell, 212 Ky. 341, 279 S.W. 327 ...          A ... distinction is sharply drawn between a ... ...

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