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  • Dr Navin C Naidu

Justice wears a crumpled suit

Updated: Jun 20, 2022

Justice? You get justice in the next world; in this world you have the law.

—– William T. Gaddis, Jr., American novelist


You pay a down payment for a piece of property. A few weeks later, an ugly hidden truth surfaces and you decide to rescind the agreement. The seller refuses. He claims you are not entitled to a refund of the down payment as it is one of the clauses in the agreement.


In come the lawyers plus guaranteed aggravation threatening to favour all parties. The judge swiftly and safely sticks to that clause in the agreement that says you are not entitled to a refund although you are armed with recently acquired evidence concerning the property. Ultimately, your down payment is history. The law wins. Justice exits. Frustration fans the flames of your reigning rage.


Crumpled justice with no concern for altered circumstances that make the contract impossible to be consummated (clausua rebus sic stantibus), or that the maker of the contract is responsible for repairing ambiguous terms that impede the enforcement of the contract (the contra proferentum rule).


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