Prof. Waddams draws an analogy between the assessment of damages in detinue and for damages in lieu of specific performance (at p. 1-49): ...if the plaintiff brings an action in detinue, the court has jurisdiction to order specific delivery of the chattel claimed. Such an order has the effect of giving the plaintiff the benefit of any increase in the value of the chattel between the date of the wrong and the date of judgment. Just as in the case of damages in lieu of specific performance, it seems to follow that on refusal of specific delivery the plaintiff must be entitled to damages representing the value of the chattel at the date of judgment. The analogy was drawn in Malhotra v. Choudhury [ 1 Ch. 52 at 78 (C.A.)]: The equitable remedy of specific performance has features markedly different from damages at common law for breach of contract. But there is an analogy at common law to the equitable remedy of specific performance. This is to be found in the action in detinue...the action in detinue partakes of the nature of an action in rem in which the plaintiff seeks specific restitution of his chattel. In this action where an order for a writ of specific delivery can be made, the plaintiff has always been entitled instead to claim its value in money assessed at the date of judgment.
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