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Parker v South East Railway Co

[1877] 2 CPD 416

Case summary last updated at 01/01/2020 18:25 by the Oxbridge Notes in-house law team.

Judgement for the case Parker v South East Railway Co

 Ps deposited bags in a cloak room and were given a ticket for the bag stating time, date and the words “see back” on which there were conditions. Were Ps bound by the conditions? CA said that a retrial was needed to establish whether Ps were bound. 

Where P receives a ticket, unaware that it contains writing, he is not bound. Where he is aware that it will contain writing and believed that the writing would contain terms/conditions, he is bound. Where, as here, Ps knew or believed that there was writing but didn’t know or believe that the writing contained conditions or terms, he was bound, PROVIDED that the ticket was given to him in such a way that he could see the writing and was reasonable notice to him that it contained conditions. (Mellish LJ). 

Prima facie a ticket doesn’t lead to new terms. The company here intended to modify the contract.  If the depositor was aware, or ought to be treated as aware, of this, the depositor is bound. The depositor should be treated as aware, if he knew or had good reason to believing the ticket contained terms, but intentionally or negligently refrained from finding out.  Without good reason to believe, he is not under obligation to examine the ticket. Whether the plaintiff had knowledge, or good reason for belief, is a question of fact. (Bagally LJ). 

If the plaintiff had read the terms, they would have been bound, likewise if they had been told there were terms, and refused to read them, or did nothing.  Likewise if they knew that the ticket contained terms. (Bramwell LJ). 

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