Has the Supreme Court condemned the rule from Pinnel’s Case to irrelevancy? An Examination of Rock Advertising v MWB Business Exchange Centres and its effect on the Part Payment of Debt Rule, Promissory Estoppel, and No Oral Modification Clauses.

Jaxson Morgan Hind

Abstract


Varying a contract in English law has many unclear aspects. The law has developed in a way where one principle is pitted against another. Whether it is the practical benefit rule or promissory estoppel against the part-payment of debt rule, or No Oral Modification (“NOM”) clauses against promissory estoppel. Rock Advertising v MWB Business Exchange Centres[1] considered all of these issues. The part-payment rule receives greater focus in this dissertation. The law is more unclear when compared to the position of NOM clauses, both before and after this decision. Further, promissory estoppel receives more attention as it affects both the part-payment rule and NOM clauses. This dissertation evaluates the state of promissory estoppel and the part-payment rule before this decision and it will reveal that Rock has left them ambiguous. It also examines the position of NOM clauses following Rock.

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