Washington Law Review


Robert L. Beale


In Wells v. Aetna Insurance Co. the Washington court indicated an increasing friendliness toward the allowance of attorney's fees as damages. The plaintiff, Wells, had purchased a car from a used car dealer. The dealer had earlier made what the court called a "fictitious" sale to someone else, and had then assigned the conditional sales contract to a financing company, Hayden Mills & Associates, Inc. Apparently there was a record of this sale at the state license department, but no valid release was on file there. So when Wells applied for a new registration and a new title certificate, these were initially granted and later cancelled. Unable to get a license for the car he had purchased, and unable to sell it, Wells brought an action to quiet title, naming as defendants the dealer, the alleged purchaser, the alleged assignee of the conditional sales contract, and Aetna Insurance Co., which was the surety on the bond required of automobile dealers by RCW

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