It is frequently laid down that consideration must move from the promisee, or plaintiff,53 and it is not infrequently supposed that this rule is the essential reason for objection to contracts for the benefit of a third person. Upon any proper analysis, however, such is not the case, In promises for the benefit of a third person the consideration moves from the promisee (though not from the plaintiff), and the difficulty is not to find a contract, but to find a reason for allowing the beneficiary, who is not the promisee, to sue upon the contract. Where the consideration does not move from the promisee the question involved is whether any contract exists. Does the law require that promises shall be paid for by the promisee, or does it merely require that the promise shall be paid for by some one? This is not merely another way of stating the inquiry, whether a detriment to the promisee is essential to the validity of consideration, or whether a benefit to the promisor is enough. For it may be said that such a benefit is enough, but that it must move from the promisee; and the rule so stated and applied though it would generally involve the existence of a detriment to the promisee, would not do so at least in one class of cases.54 In spite of dicta to the effect that consideration must move from the plaintiff or promisee, it seems better to adopt the broader rule. So far as possible the law should enforce reasonable business agreements seriously made, and, certainly it is a possible and reasonable agreement for A to pay B a price or consideration for a promise made by B to C. In spite of the rule of the English Common Law it is not surprising, therefore, to find an express provision in the Indian Contract Act,55 defining consideration as moving from the promisee " or any other person." Such actual decisions as have been made in the United States also seem to support the view here advocated. Without doubt a promissory note made to a payee in return for a consideration received by the maker from a third person is binding,56-58 and the same result has been reached in cases of ordinary simple contracts.59
71 Ga. 818; Smith v. Force, 31 Minn. 119, 16 N. W. 704; Richards Exec. v. Richards, 46 Pa. 78; Dougherty p. Tor-rente, 25 Pa. C. C. 317. Boord v. Boord, Pelham (So. Aust.), 58.
52 Not only a guaranty of a debt incurred at the guarantor's request, but a guaranty of dividends, given by an individual in consideration of the promisee's subscription to the stock of a corporation illustrates the principle. West a. King, 163 Ky. S61, 174 S. W. 11. 3ee, further, other cases where the consideration did not enure to the benefit of the promisor, cited supra, Sec. 102, and Isgrig v. Franklin Nat. Bank, 53 Ind. App. 217, 101 N. E. 398; Sears v. Krekel (Mo. App.), 184 S. W. 911; Mack v. Mack, 87 Neb. 819, 128 N. W. 527, 31 L. R. A. (N. S.) 441; Southern Realty Co. v. Harmon, 89 Neb. 802, 132 N. W. 533; Froude v. Fleischmann, 178 N. Y. App. D. 257, 164 N. Y. S. 1003; Jamison-Semple Co. v. Richard, 78 N. Y. Misc. 355,
138 N. Y. Supp. 401; Trustees v. Mebane, 165 N. C. 644, 81 S. E. 1020; Davis v. Blum, 104 S. C. 218, 88 S. E. 465; Clement v, Rowe, 33 S. Dak. 499, 146 N. W. 700; Gauss-Lagenberg Bat Co. v. Alley (Tex. Civ. App.), 154 S. W. 1062; Ballard v. Burton, 64 Vt. 387, 24 Atl. 769, 16 L. R. A. 664; Nicholson v. Neary, 77 Wash. 294, 137 Pac. 492.
53 In Thomas v. Thomas, 2 Q. B. 851, Patterson, J., said (and these words are often quoted): "Consideration means something which is of some value in the eye of the law, moving from the plaintiff; it may be some detriment to the plaintiff, or some benefit 'to the defendant; but at all events it must be moving from the plaintiff." "One of the most elementary rules of English law is that which requires the consideration for a simple contract to move from the promisee; and it is too well settled to admit of dispute in any court." 32 L. Qu. Rev. 6.
54 See infra, Sec.131a.
55 Sec. 2(d).
56-58 Pierce v. Harper, 249 Fed. 867, 162 C. C. A. 101; Fanning v. Russell, 94 111. 386; McIntire v. Yates, 104 111. 491; Hatton Exr. v. Jones, 78 Ind. 466; Mize v. Barnes, 78 Ky. 506; Nichols v. Nichols, 136 Mass. 256; Spooner v. Spooner, 156 Mass. 52, 28 N. E. 1121; Eaton v. Libbey, 165 Mass. 218, 42 N. E. 1127, 52 Am. St. Rep. 511;
Crosier v. Crosier, 215 Mass. 535, 102 N. E. 901; Horn v. Fuller, 6 N. H. fill; Farley v. Cleveland, 4 Cow. 432, 15 Am. Dec. 387, tub nam. Cleveland v. Farley, 9 Cow. 739.
59 Pigott v. Thompson, 3 B. & P. 149, by Lord Alvanley; Bell v. Sappington, 111 Ga. 391, 36 S. E. 780; Owenby v. Georgia Baptist Assembly, 137 Ga. 698, 74 S. E. 56, citing Ga. Civ. Code, i 4249; Schmucker v. Sibert, 18 Kan.
There is perhaps greater difficulty in supposing a bilateral contract than a unilateral where the consideration does not move from the promisee to the promisor. In a unilateral contract only one party need furnish consideration; in a bilateral contract each party must furnish consideration, since there are two promises each of which must be supported by consideration. Nevertheless, even a bilateral agreement has been held binding in England which consisted of a promise from A to B given in consideration of a promise by B to C.60 This decision, however, though not cited, must be regarded as overruled by a later case decided by the House of Lords, which insists on the necessity of consideration moving from the plaintiff.61 This form of bilateral agreement is perhaps exemplified also in a novation where A owes B money and
104, 111, 26 Am Rep. 766; Williamson v. Yager, 91 Ky. 282, 286,16 3. W. 660, 34 Am. St. Rep. 184; Cabot v. Haskins, 3 Pick. 83; Palmer Bank v. Insurance Co., 166 Mass. 189, 196,196, 44 N. E. 211,55 Am. St. Rep. 387; Van Emani v. Stanchfield, 10 Minn. 255; Hamilton v. Hamilton, 127 N. Y. App. Div. 871, 112 N. Y. Supp. 10; Gold v. Phillips, 10 Johns. 412; Lawrence v. Fox, 20 N. Y. 268,270,271 276, 277; Rector v. Teed, 120 N. Y. 683, 24 N. E. 1014. In Merrill v. Peaslee, 146 Mass. 460, 16 N. E. 271, 4 Am. St. Rep. 334, Holmes, J., in a diesentitig opinion said: "We must assume, and the majority of the court do assume that a consideration furnished by a married woman who is a cestui que trust will sustain a promise by her husband to her trustee. Whatever might be thought upon this point as & new question, it has been settled, not without discussion, and we ate bound by the decisions. Butler v. Ins, 139 Mass. 202, 29 N. E. 654. See Nichols v..Nichols, 136 Mass. 256." In De Cicoo v. Schweizer, 221 N. Y. 431, 117 N. E. 807, consideration furnished by two jointly wis held to support a promise to one. 60Wert Yorkshire Darracq Agency,
Ltd., v. Coleridge,  2 E. B. 328. The head-note of this case reads; "All the directors of a company in liquidation mutually agreed to forego their respective claims to directors' fees then owing. The liquidator was a party to the agreement on behalf of the company. Subsequently the company sued one of the directors for work done, and the director counter-claimed against the company for his fees earned previously to the agreement. It was held that although there was no consideration for the agreement moving from the company, the fact of the liquidator being a party to it rendered it binding as between the director and the company; and that the agreement was, therefore, a good defence to the counter-claim." The directors in effect, all made promises to the company through its liquidator, and their respective promises were held binding though neither the company nor its liquidator parted with consideration. See also the somewhat similar case of Union Bank v. Sullivan, 214 N. Y. 332, 108 N. E. 568, commented upon supra, Sec. 102. ad fin.
61 Dunlop Pneumatic Tyre Co. v. Selfridge,  A. C. 847.
A, B, and C, agree that in consideration of the discharge of A, C shall become liable in A's place. In such a case it must either be supposed that the consideration of C's promise to B to pay the debt is B's agreement with A to discharge him, or that B's promise to C to discharge A can be taken advantage of by A. That such a novation is binding and is effectual both to discharge A and to render C liable is well settled,62 though there is little satisfactory discussion in the cases of the reasons for it. It has also been held that a promise made by the obligor of a bond to the obligee that if the bond shall be assigned payment will be made to the assignee, is enforceable in his own name and right by an assignee.63 Here if the obligor
62 Tatlock v. Harris, 3 T. R. 174,180; Bird v. Gammon, 3 Bing. (N. C.) 883; Bilborough v. Holmes, 5 Ch. D. 255; In re Errington, 11894) 1Q.B. 11,14; In re Ransford, 194 Fed. 658 (C. C. A.); Underwood v. Lovelace, 61 Ala. 155; Trudeau v. Poutre, 165 Mass. 81, 42 N. E. 508; Heaton v. Angier, 7 N. H. 397, 28 Am. Dec. 353; Corbett v. Cochran, 3 Hill L. (S. C.) 41, 44, 30 Am. Dec. 348. In the case last cited the court said-"Where the promise is to pay another's debt, in consideration of his being discharged, it seems to be well settled now, that there need be no consideration moving between the person promised for, and the person who promises." See also Roe v. Haugh, 12 Mod. 133. In 6 Harv. L. Rev. 184, Lectures on Legal History, 298, Professor Ames explains the validity of a novation on the ground of an ordinary bilateral agreement with C, the new debtor, as part of which, B, the creditor, agrees with C, the new debtor, to discharge A, the old debtor. This, Mr. Ames argues, would operate as an equitable defence to A, since if the creditor B should sue A after the agreement with C, the damages recovered by B would be recovered over again from him on account of his breach of his contract with C. That an agreement with C for sufficient consideration to discharge A should be at least an equitable defence to A, need not be denied.. This solution seems to involve, however, a recognition of the right of a beneficiary to enforce a promise for his benefit, and hence can hardly justify the result in every jurisdiction. If the sole right on the promise was in C as promisee, whatever was recoverable against B for breach of his agreement with C would be recoverable by C. It would be only on the theory that the contract was made for A's benefit that A would be entitled to any interest in such damages, or any right, legal or equitable, in the contract. But a novation is good in jurisdictions which deny a right to a beneficiary as well as in those which admit the right. Moreover, a novation is as good where C enters into the transaction for his own benefit in order to discharge an indebtedness of his own to A by assuming A's indebtedness to B, as in cases where A was intended to be the sole beneficiary of C's promise. Furthermore, it should be observed that a novation whs valid at law as a discharge of A's liability long before equitable defences were allowed at law.
63 Fenner v. Meares, 2 W. B1. 1269; Innes v. Dunlop, 8 T. R. 595; Warren v. Wheeler, 21 Me. 484. See also can be regarded as promising the assignee such consideration as there is comes from the assignment by the assignor.