| Commentary

(a) The general rule

| Commentary

(2)     Equitable remedies

(a)     The general rule

As a general proposition, equity will not order specific performance of a contract for personal services. The reason sometimes given is that to do so would smack of slavery, but the better reasons are that it is impossible for the court to supervise such a contract and there has been a loss of the essential element of trust and confidence without which a personal services contract cannot be efficacious: C H Giles & Co Ltd v Morris [1972] 1 All ER 960, [1972] 1 WLR 307 at 318, Megarry J.

As it was put by Fry LJ in De Francesco v Barnum (1890) Ch D 430, 438, the courts are: 'very unwilling to extend decisions the effect of which is to compel persons who are not desirous of maintaining continuous personal relations with one another to continue those personal relationships.' The employee, a dancer, was working under what was described as a 'very disadvantageous contact of apprenticeship' which involved her being paid no remuneration. The contract provided that she needed express permission to take paid employment elsewhere. It was held that the contract was unfair and unenforceable. An injunction and specific

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