Unjust Enrichment and Restitution: Challenges and Prospects for the Nigerian Legal System

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Oni, B.A
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In recent years unjustified enrichment and restitution has been one of the most intellectually vital areas of private law all over the World except in Nigeria. The thesis examines this principle which has been recognised in other jurisdictions as an independent body of law, either as law of restitution or law of unjustified enrichment different from any other legal obligations or subjects such as contract, tort and property law and which is very effective, more encompassing and better than the available legal mechanisms for cases of reversing unjust enrichment in Nigeria. The thesis further examines the challenges and prospects of its application for the Nigerian legal system. To achieve the above aim, the thesis employs the methods of critical analysis to discuss the evolution and theories of the process in the light of the information derived from primary and secondary sources. Consequently, the thesis has been conveniently divided into eight chapters, the first two chapters provides the background for the study and literature reviewed, the aim of the thesis, statement of the problem and discussion of the reviewed literature. In chapter three, an overview of the principles of unjust enrichment and restitution such as the meaning, nature, application, historical evolution and restitution for wrongs were considered. Chapter four examines unjust enrichment and restitution across jurisdictions; the position in the common law, civil and mixed jurisdictions were considered. Chapter five also examines unjust enrichment and restitution in three party situations in a comparative analysis. Chapter six appraised the existing legal and institutional framework for reversing cases of unjust enrichment and other restitutionary remedies such as tracing, constructive trust, money had and received, propiertary rights and quantum meruit, the chapter further discussed the scope and limitations of the aforementioned framework for the cases of reversing unjust enrichment, to the extent that they are useful for specific purposes and of no general application. Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Act, 2004, Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC) Act, 2004 Money Laundering(prohibition) Act 2004, some selected provisions of the criminal code that deal with cases of unjust enrichment were also considered. The thesis examines the scope of these statutory provisions and finds that they addressed an aspect of unjust enrichment which is unjust enrichment for wrongs. Chapter seven discussed the challenges and prospects of unjust enrichment and restitution for the Nigeria legal system. While chapter eight is made up of conclusions, findings, contributions to knowledge and recommendations.
A Thesis Submitted to the School of Postgraduate Studies, University of Lagos
Legal Obligations , Private Law , Nigeria , Property law , Research Subject Categories::LAW/JURISPRUDENCE::Private law
Oni, B.A (2010). Unjust Enrichment and Restitution: Challenges and Prospects for the Nigerian Legal System. A Thesis Submitted to University of Lagos School of Postgraduate Studies Phd Thesis and Dissertation, 281pp.