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Agency by Estoppel

A situation in which a reasonable person may assume agency agreement exists when it does not. For example, if a person or company allows another person or company to use proprietary letterhead to send out correspondence, agency by estoppel may exist. Because the agency is assumed, the (presumed) principal may be legally bound by the agent's actions.
Farlex Financial Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All Rights Reserved


A doctrine that stops one from denying facts or taking a course of action because it would be unfair under the circumstances.It may be because someone else relied on former statements regarding the facts or because someone else relied upon a situation allowed to exist by a party, so that the party cannot now be allowed to change that situation.The concept commonly arises in three situations:

1. Before the sale of an income-producing property, the tenants sign estoppel certificates acknowledging they have no claims against the landlord, no defenses to any of the terms or conditions of their lease, and no outside or “side” agreements varying the terms of the lease. After the sale, the tenant cannot claim otherwise, even if all parties agree that there has been a wrong done to the tenant by the prior landlord and the tenant would otherwise be able to cancel the lease if it were not for the estoppel certificate.

2. A subdivision with restrictive covenants grows lax in the enforcement of them and per- mits many violations over the years regarding, for example, parking boats and motor homes in driveways. If one buys a home in the subdivision and keeps a motor home in the driveway, the principle of estoppel will prevent the homeowners association from suddenly deciding to enforce that particular covenant.

3. A government employee tells someone one thing, and it later turns out to be wrong. The citizen has already taken action on the incorrect information. In most circumstances, courts will not allow estoppel against a government or government agency.

The Complete Real Estate Encyclopedia by Denise L. Evans, JD & O. William Evans, JD. Copyright © 2007 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
The estoppel attaches upon issuance of a final written decision from the PTAB; i.e., roughly 18 months from filing the petition.
Similar to institution being on a claim-by-claim basis, estoppel applies on a claim-by-claim basis.
A third species of estoppel, which applied both to representations of fact and, importantly, of intention, could in some circumstances require a representation to be made good or else compensation be paid for loss arising from detrimental reliance.
A fourth species of estoppel involved a slight retreat from Jorden v Money.
Normally, collateral estoppel is asserted based on a prior ruling by a court of law, but sometimes courts apply the doctrine based upon the prior judgments of administrative law panels.
(1966), the Court expanded the application of collateral estoppel by holding that administrative rulings preclude later suits when the administrative body is acting in a judicial capacity and resolves issues that the parties had an adequate opportunity to litigate.
Consider then how the Court might treat equitable estoppel as a remedy under ERISA in the context of the aforementioned considerations.
Equitable estoppel, or estoppel in pais, is defined as:
Analysis of the effects of cause of action estoppel has three major methodological goals: (a) to reexamine the rule in light of the behaviour modification model.
The article discusses the problematic incentives of litigating parties under the current Anglo-American rule of cause of action estoppel, and some of its harmful effects on the conduct and cost of litigation as well as on the chances of reaching a settlement.
(89) For example, the traditional response of the law to situations where a person's assumptions about the outcome of a particular dispute differ from the law's prescribed outcomes is not to change the law but to change the application of the law as between these parties using doctrines such as estoppel or waiver.
Instead of looking to tort, they should instead have turned to equity and the doctrines of estoppel contained therein.