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Contract LawJournalism and MediaFiona Taylor Taylorssolicitors1 outlook com Contract Terms The terms of a contract are binding obligations.which the parties agree to perform to completethe contract they are its contents effectively Non compliance will result in breach and theseriousness of that breach will affect whatremedies are available There are a number of.ways in which terms can become part of the What is a contract An agreement enforceable at law An essentialfeature of contract is a promise by one party toanother party to do or forebear from doing.certain specified acts The offer of a promisebecomes a promise by acceptance Contract isthat species of agreement whereby legalobligation is constituted and defined betweenthe parties to it It can then be enforced in a.court of law or other suitable forum There will be OFFER ACCEPTANCE Reasons for Contracts because they create legitimate expectations in bothparties that their promises will be carried out. because there one party often acts to their potentialdetriment losses may be incurred as a consequenceof agreeing to a certain course of action because it would be unfair if one party carried outtheir part of the agreement for the other party to be.allowed not to do so What is an Offer A contract usually starts withacceptance of an offer An offer is astatement by one party the offerer . the person making the offer identifying terms of an agreement bywhich s he is prepared to be bound ifthey are accepted by the offeree the person to whom the offer is. Martin Turner 2014 The character of an Offer a statement of willingness to be bound by theterms of the offer Distinguishable from an invitation to treat . see below Distinguishable from a mere statement of pricewhich does not indicate a willingness to sell Special words may make an apparent invitationto treat an offer eg competitive tendering. Communicating an Offer a statement of willingness to be bound bythe terms of the offer Distinguishable from an invitation to treat Distinguishable from a mere statement of.price which does not indicate a willingness Special words may make an apparentinvitation to treat an offer eg competitive Revoking an Offer an offer may be withdrawn any time up to.acceptance revocation must be communicated to theofferee to be valid this may be through a reliable third party a unilateral offer cannot be withdrawn.while the offeree is still in the act ofperformance Terminating an OfferAn offer ends in one of four ways it is accepted so a contract is then formed. passage of time whether stated time or areasonable time failure of a condition precedent ie a condition thatmust be fulfilled before the offer is completed death of a party. Invitation to Treat An invitation to treat is such that the personresponding has not yet made an offer to buy and therefore does not of itself give rise to abinding contract eg invitation to council tenant.to buy council house auction catalogues tenders to provide goods or services advertisements goods displayed in shopwindow a statement of price made duringnegotiations indicating that an offer exists . When contract is formed r by ce by A thisInvitation Acc Conto Treat eg Off ept trac.goods er anc t atoffered for by poisale A B nt Offer to Treat The significance of the invitation to treat is.that the person responding to it has notaccepted an offer so their action does not atthat point create a binding contract Sometimes whilst something may seem likean invitation to treat if it has the effect of an.offer a positive response may lead to abinding contract being formed Acceptance may be deemed by conduct Acceptance There is no contract until there has been.acceptance The contract is formed immediately UPONacceptance It is vital to establish that the response toan offer is in fact acceptance and is.communicated to the offeree Basic Rules of AcceptanceAn acceptance is an intention to be bound by theterms of the offerIt must therefore. i be unequivocal ii be unconditional iii correspond precisely with the terms ofthe offer this is known as the mirrorimage rule . Mirror Image Rule an attempt to vary the terms of the offer is a counter offer This is tantamount to rejection of the original offer so theoriginal offer is therefore is no longer open to acceptance if there is a counter offer the terms of that will be included.in the contract the courts will not allow a party to benefit from both thecounter offer and the original offer you can t have thebest of both worlds A rejection of an ancillary subject may still be a counter.offer although the main terms are accepted A mere enquiry that does not seek to vary the terms of anoffer is not a counter offer Communication of an Offer Until acceptance is communicated.there is NO CONTRACT usually Some exceptions Silence is notnormally enough Acceptance can be in any form Consumer Protection Distance.Selling Regulations 2000 A valuable consideration in the senseConsiderationof the law may consist either in someright interest profit or benefit.accruing to one party or someforbearance detriment loss orresponsibility given suffered orundertaken by the other Which means what has it cost you or.what have you gained e g the moneyfor the Mars Bar Consideration Need not equal the value of the other thing Must be real tangible of value i e SUFFICIENT. although that may be very little Must not be past unless the service wasrequested Must move from the promissee to sue or besued a party must give consideration which.does not mean just being thoughtful Consideration What one is already bound to do under one contract cannot be theconsideration for a new one unless it involves something extra orthe other party gains extra benefit. An agreement to accept part payment only is unenforceable unlessthe payment is made earlier or in different form or the other partyis prevented from revoking the promise by estoppel The exception to the rule that consideration cannot be past relatesto service originally requested and then carried out by the other.party A later promise to pay is enforceable even though theagreement to pay comes after the service is rendered If third parties rights are affected there may not have to bemovement of consideration from the promissee Contract Rightsof Third Parties Act 1999 . Intention to Create Legal Domestic and social arrangements there ispresumed to be NO intention to create legalrelations unless the contrary is shown Soarrangements between husband and wife or parents and.children are not usually enforceable Arrangementsusually are enforceable between estranged couples domestic arrangements where money has changed handsand domestic arrangements where one party has suffereda detriment to comply with the agreement . Business and commercial transactions there ispresumed to be an intention to create legalrelations unless the contrary is shown Formation of Contract1 Simple e g sale of goods and supply of.services These can be made orally inwriting or even implied by contract sothere is no specific format2 Speciality e g transfers of land and landinterest Must be in specific form either or.deed or writing to be valid e g guarantees Void Of no legal effect a nullity eg anagreement for an immoral consideration A contract may be void on the face of it .or evidence may be required to show thatit is void But when an illegal contract hasbeen executed money paid either inconsideration or performance of thecontract cannot be recovered back . Voidable an agreement or other act which oneof the parties is entitled to rescind and whichuntil that happens has full legal effect Eg incase of fraud in a contract If however theparty entitled to rescind the contract affirms it .or fails to exercise his right to rescind within areasonable time so that the position of theparties becomes altered or if he takes a benefitor acquires third party rights then he will bebound by it . Freedom of Contract Inequality between the parties eg big company versusunrepresented individual exemption clauses implied terms eg in employment use of standard from contracts business practice. statutory protection of consumers EU law Authority to contract if there is no authority to offer usually an offer cannot be accepted Legality. Capacity Mental legal Enforcability capacity to contract intention to contract consensus ad idem mutuality of intent .offer and acceptance valuable consideration legality of purpose sufficiency of terms Minors not miners i e under 18 . There are two groups of valid and enforceablecontracts for minors Valid enforceable Contracts for necessaries according to stationin life and present needs Must pay reasonably.for goods or services actually delivered Contracts for service training or education oneadverse term will not invalidate the contract butmust be substantially to minor s benefitVoidable so can enter into but may be.set aside Contracts to lease property Contracts to purchase shares in a Contracts to join a partnership Marriage settlements.Void so cannot be enforced Goods or services other than necessaries Accounts stated Intoxication A contract made by a person while drunk is.voidable if at the time of contracting theperson did not know the quality of his her actsand the other part knew of the intoxication The party may ratify the contract uponreaching sobriety. S3 Sale of Goods Act 1979 where the contractis for necessaries the party making thecontract while drunk need only pay areasonable price for goods actually delivered Mental Illness. A contract made by somebody mentally ill isvoidable if when contracting the mentally ill personwas unaware of the quality of his her actions andthe other party knew of the illness A contract made while not ill will be binding despite.consequent illness S3 Sale of Goods Act 1979 where the contract is fornecessaries the party making the contract whilementally ill need only pay a reasonable price forgoods actually delivered. Privity Who is party to the contract andhas a right to take action in respect of it Basic considerations Who can enforce it Who is a partyto the contract Who are you contracting with Only a party to a contract can sue on it Lord. Privity of contract is the relation which exists betweenthe immediate parties to a contract which is necessaryto allow one person to sue another RepresentationsType of Liability Basis for Liability or not.RepresentationTerms Create binding obligations so attach liability Actually incorporated into thecontract and so are the obligationsMere Attach no liability in themselves if correctly Induce a party to enter a contractrepresentations stated but do not become a part of it so.no not bindingMisrepresentatio Can attach liability and therefore remedies Even though not part of thens contract the representation actedto induce the other party to enterinto the contract and so vitiated .their free willMere Opinions Attach no liability in themselves Opinion is not a matter of fact andis variableExpert opinions Can attach liability as terms if important Party is entitled to rely upon theenough to be I skill and expertise of experts.ncorporated or as misrepresentations iffalsely statedTrade Puffs Attach no liability Mere advertising boasts so notexpected to take seriously Reflection. Be aware when you are creating contractualarrangements Especially consider offer acceptance and consideration Don t sign contracts without reading them Don t enter into contracts you can t fulfil. Before entering into a contract consider termsand conditions and whether these can benegotiated Honour contracts Get them in writing. Keep evidence Contract Terms Express terms confirmed and incorporated by theparties to it Must be seen to be of importance to oneof the parties May be oral or written Usually close in.time to making of contract Example of reliance onexpertise of one party written signed Implied terms by custom past dealings to makeThe terms of a contract are binding obligations which the parties agree to perform to complete the contract â€“ they are its contents effectively. Non-compliance will result in breach and the seriousness of that breach will affect what remedies are available. There are a number of ways in which terms can become part of the contract.