The court decided that it could not bring an action against the promised alimony, in part because it was a purely national agreement that it wished to make legally binding. Under contract law, the binding nature of an agreement requires the intention to establish legal relations between the parties. In order for an agreement to be legally binding and intend to create legal relations, the law has distinguished between two types of agreements: agreements concluded in the context of social and national relations and agreements concluded in a commercial environment. As far as social agreements are concerned, there is no presumption and the case is decided exclusively in its case. The Court of Appeal ruled that their appeal should fail. Two members of the Tribunal focused their decision on the absence of any consideration on the part of the woman. Lord Atkin stressed, however, that these national rules, even if they are being considered, are clearly not legally binding by the parties. He used the example of the man who agreed to provide money for his wife in exchange for their „housekeeping and maintenance of the household and children.“ If it is a contract, each could sue the other for non-compliance with the promised commitment. The woman had failed to enter into a contract and had not done so.
In 1919, Lord Atkin at Balfour against Balfour (where a man promised his wife to pay child support while working in Ceylon) said there was no „intention to be legally bound“ while the woman relied on payments. The judge found that agreements between spouses would generally not be legally enforceable: Lord Atkins` judgment justified the position that, with respect to internal agreements, there is a presumption that they should not be legally binding. Although many sources view „social and domestic agreements“ as a single class, it is preferable to treat „family agreements“ as a separate class from „social agreements“ because it does not make a presumption and applies only to the objective test. Commercial transactions confirm a strong presumption of a valid contract: these agreements, in which the parties act as if they were foreigners, are considered binding.