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Two questions.

Firstly, is it enforceable.

Secondly, if it were, would I owe £10 in Bitcoin now, or the amount of Bitcoin at the date £10 would get you 5 years ago?

I believe I've answered the first question, since:

Under the donative-promise principle, a simple, un-relied upon donative promise is unenforceable.

However, say hypothetically it was enforceable, would I owe £10 or £1000 (since bitcoin has seen a massive increase in 5 years)?

P.S. I never bought or owned the promised Bitcoin in the first place

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Not enforceable. Firstly, because there is no consideration moving from the friend (becoming of a certain age probably wouldn't count as a good consideration). Secondly, because it was a friend, and, absent evidence of the contrary (e.g. written agreement), no intention to create legal relations is presumed.

If you told him you'd give him £10 by specific means — that's what you would have to give him, by those means, be it goats or bitcoins.

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  • Thank you firstly! So say 1 goat costs £10 5 years ago, and today 1 goat costs £1000. Would I owe £10 or 1 goat (£1000)? Just so I'm super clear Feb 11 at 0:21
  • @JonathanClark If you agreed to owe a dead goat, you would now owe £10 in 1/100 of a dead goat. However, if you agreed to give an alive goat, you would have to re-negotiate the terms, or go to court to resolve it.
    – Greendrake
    Feb 11 at 0:24
  • Maybe I should have asked in Bitcoin after all(!) So from that I believe I owe either £10, or it would have to be re-negotiated in court if that was contested? Feb 11 at 0:26
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    @JonathanClark You'd certainly owe just the current bitcoin equivalent of £10.
    – Greendrake
    Feb 11 at 0:33

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