This chapter examines the doctrines of champerty and maintenance—the most prominent examples of a public policy limitation on the ability to assign. The doctrines of champerty and maintenance trace their origins back to the earliest days of the common law, and indeed were the basis for the common law's traditional antipathy to all assignments. Champerty is traditionally described as a species of maintenance or ‘an aggravated form of maintenance’ that is said to occur ‘when the person maintaining another stipulates for a share of the proceeds or the action or dispute or other contentious proceedings where property is in dispute’. The chapter then explains the effect of champerty and maintenance on an assignment or other contract.
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