Jay M. Feinman


In this essay, Professor Feinman argues that the doctrine of promissory estoppel has outlived its usefulness as a theory of contract Professor Feinman relies on an article written by Professors Edward Yorio and Steven Thel as an illustration of the debate over whether promissory estoppel is based upon the enforcement of promises or the protection of reliance. Professor Feinman rejects the conceptual framework upon which this debate is based and ultimately proposes that contract law should move to a relational analysis, ignoring the distinction between promise and reliance and replacing it with an analysis of the obligations involved in a particular relationship.

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