Legal Memorandum: Claim of Unjust Enrichment in LA

Issue: What are the elements for a claim of unjust enrichment under Louisiana law?

Area of Law: Litigation & Procedure
Keywords: Unjust enrichment; Claim; Elements
Jurisdiction: Louisiana
Cited Cases: None
Cited Statutes: Civil Code Article 2298; Civ. Code 892
Date: 10/01/2014

A claim for unjust enrichment in Louisiana is provided for in the Civil Code.  Article 2298 provides: 

A person who has been enriched without cause at the expense of another person is bound to compensate that person. The term “without cause” is used in this context to exclude cases in which the enrichment results from a valid juridical act or the law. The remedy declared here is subsidiary and shall not be available if the law provides another remedy for the impoverishment or declares a contrary rule.


The amount of compensation due is measured by the extent to which one has been enriched or the other has been impoverished, whichever is less.


The extent of the enrichment or impoverishment is measured as of the time the suit is brought or, according to the circumstances, as of the time the judgment is rendered

In applying Article 2298, Louisiana courts have identified five specific elements of a claim for unjust enrichment:  (1) defendant’s enrichment; (2) plaintiff’s impoverishment; (3) a causal relationship between the enrichment and resulting impoverishment; (4) an absence of justification or legal cause for the enrichment and impoverishment; (5) no other remedy at law, i.e., the action is subsidiary or corrective in nature.  Minyard v. […]

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