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Cases in which the claim of quantum meruit arises

The various cases in which the claim of quantum meruit arises are discussed below:

In case of void agreement, or contract that becomes void [Sec. 65]

When an agreement is discovered to be void, or when a contract becomes void, any person who has received any advantage under such an agreement or a contract is bound to restore it, or to make compensation for it, to the person from whom he received it.


X was appointed as a managing director in a company under a written contract on certain remuneration. After few months of his appointment, the contract (of appointment) was found void because the directors, who made the appointment, were not empowered to appoint him. X had acted innocently and had rendered his services without the knowledge of the directors’ lack of capacity to appoint him. He filed a suit of the remuneration specified in the agreement on basis of quantum meruit. It was held by the court that X can recover reasonable compensation for the services rendered by him on the basis of quantum meruit.

In case of the contract being prevented by the act of the other party

If a party does not complete the contract or prevents the other party from completing the contract, the aggrieved party can sue based on quantum meruit. When the a contract is divisible and the party at fault has enjoyed the benefit for the work done by the party not at fault then the party not at fault can claim reasonable composition on the basis of quantum meruit.


Sunil appoint Anil to sing at his hotel on weekends (Saturday & Sunday) for next 10 weeks. On the 6th week Sunil informs Anil that his services are required no more due to change in policy by the hotel authorities. Anil can clam reasonable compensation for the services rendered by him.

When a person does something for the other without the intention of doing it gratuitously

When a person provides certain services to the other or deliver something without an intention to do so gratuitously and the other person enjoys the benefit of such act then the other person should restore such benefit to the person who provided such services or goods as per Sec 70 of Indian Contract Act 1872



X leaves certain goods at Y’s house. Y treats the goods as his own and uses them. Y needs to compensate X for the goods used by him.

When the contract is not Divisible

If the contract is divisible then the party not at fault can claim compensation but in cases where the contract is not divisible the party cannot claim quantum meruit. There are certain contracts where the performance of a part of the work is not contemplated by either parties and hence the performance of whole of obligation becomes necessary.

When an indivisible work is wholly but badly performed

In case a contract is completely performed, but the performance is poor, then the other party can make a deduction of the bad work.

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