Contract Cases I

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Facts/RatioCaseExtra Info
'May be prepared to sell you' is an invitation to treat. House... -
Generally adverts are NOT offers - Birds...-
Displays in shop windows are not offers either..-
If display states that goods will be sold to person who pays required price... offer. 'we will beat any TV... price by £20 on the spot'Lefkowitz v Greater Minneapolis Store
Tender invitation, not normally an offer - unless says that highest or lowest tender will be accepted.No red letter bids either...
Transaction by machine - likely to be an offer.-
Auction 'without reserve' - WILL sell to highest bidder = offer£400 for £27k of machine...
Offer of reward for info or return of lost possession, offer exhausted once accepted... no repeated rewards-
In others, nature of the act requested leaves offer open to ripen into agreement on performance... not mere puff, £1000 in the bank...-
Revocation of unilateral offer - not possible when performance has started...-
here - substantial remuneration for little risk, it was possible...-
but not here... they were paying the mortgage for the house... father's estate cannot break it off... could if they'd breached.-
Cross offers - 2 identical ones - no contract-
If A works for B without his knowledge, can only sue for value of work where there is evidence of recognition or acceptance of work by B...Captain helps ship home..
Counter offer kills the rejection - knocks it on the head with a...-
asking for clarification of the offer, making express what is implied, asking if offeror will modify terms, does NOT kill...-
battle of forms - 'accepts' with list of standard terms... last shot accepted = succesful offer-
'general rule, hardly necessary to state, contract formed when acceptance is COMMUNICATED by the offeree to the offeror'Carlill also says this... confirms P v L below...
if the line goes dead in conversation - tough. with instand communication methods must actually get there-
Generally - acceptance must be communicated by the offerree or his agent...-
Where post is reasonable reply, acceptance is completed on posting a properly directed letter. Offeror bears the risk...-
Remember - always option to the offeror to secure protection by demanding actual notification of acceptance...-
Silence cannot generally constitute acceptance - even for a horse...-
The accepter must have knowledge of an offer - no reward for those who did not know it existed...-
But if you know and are motivated by something else anyway, you can still claim it...-
two partis are found to actually have a contract between each other bound by the yacht club rules...
Revocation must generally be communicate to offeree... opposite of postal ruleThe Brimnes 1975 suggests arrival sufficient
But US authority says revocation can simply go through same channel as offer...-
An offeree who knows the offer has been withdrawn cannot accept even if it came from a source other than the offeror...-
Death does not necessarily terminate - offeree who does not know of offeror's death can accept it, unless its true construction says otherwise. e.g. personal offer-
Law is generally anxious to uphold contracts lest it be seen as a destroyer of bargains... timber of 'fair specificaiton' - trade custom and previous transaction. but you do need certainty - Scammel v Ouston 1941
Lockout agreement - not sufficiently certain... 'duty of good faith inherently repugnant to adversarial position of negotiating parties'-
When a contract has been wholly or partially performed it is unlikely to be too uncertain. -
'buyers intend business where philanthropists may not' - if no legal consequences in contemplation of parties - none will lie...Intention to Create Legal Relations
Family argument not usually legal - agreement to pay uni allowance only a 'moral obligation' - NZ authority-
'fact of intention to contract is objective... if reasonable person would consider that there was... then there is.'-
'valuable consideration may consist in some right, interest, profit, or benefit... or forbearance, detriment, loss, or responsibility...'-
Consideration must be a benefit/forbearance in RETURN for a promise, not in reliance upon it... -
Past consideration is NOT good with exceptions... if done at the request of promiser and remuneration was assumed-
wife to live with h's mother - improves house - her in laws say they'll pay back when m dies - not good - past consideration-
You have managed so well you'll get a third share of profits - fail to pay...- Remuneration was implicit and performance was requested...-
Clarified - allowed if, i. done at promisor's request, ii. remuneration was expected. iii. payment must be legally enforceable if it had been agreed in advance.-
Consideration need not be adequate but must be real... no consideration to refrain from a course of action never seriously contemplated...-
An act may be consideration even if not solely motivated by the promise...-
Forbearance to sue can be good consideration - but if the forbearing party knows the claim is invalid, it wont' be. -
But - if they think they have a claim and do not really, fine.-
Promise to perform EXISTING duty not good consideration... PUBLIC duty - turn up to subpoena-
but if you do more than that... go above and beyond the public duty, it might be... police at a demonstration...-
promise to care for child was of 'practical benefit' to father... more than statutory duty said, Morris J - Benefit to dad, said Denning, all said ok. 'well looked after and happy'-
Existing duty to THIRD PARTY - MAY be good consideration... - already engaged to be married. affirms Scotson v Pegg...
Stevedore's unloading - alreay boudn by contract to do by 3rd party) consideration for a promise to relieve them of liability for damage...-
Existing duty to PROMISEE - NOT generally... but economic duress more flexible now. ship...-
But... i. A+B contract ii) before completion A doubts it will iii. A then promises additional pay iv. obviating disben/gain ben v. no economic duress/fraud v. can be good considera-
Discharge of a debt - 'payment of a smaller sum in satisfaction of a larger is not good consideration' - but difference in performance, cloak, horse, hawk, robe... different day de-
Affirmed in the case with the dr... no no no.-
This case said W v R cannot extend to debt as it would leave F v B with no application...-
Dennings ex tempore judgement - had he tried to claim full arrears of war years... estopped by his promise, prevented assertion of legal right in full. promise binding even in abse-
but it must be inequitable to go back on performance... not so here - had them over a barrell..-
do you need detrimental rleiance? denning says no...-
but Goff J says it depends... discretion-
i. clear promise ii. inequitable to go back. iii. alteration of position/reliance. iv. suspensory not extinctive v. not a cause of actioncan't sue husband for payments...
Suspensory not extinctive... metal case... could go back with reasonable notice...-
Proprietary estoppel - requires detrimental reliance - C acts in reasonable reliance to their detriment - believe they will acquire property rights...scuttling sideways v isaac island not bc..
though a misrepresentation renders an agreement voidable, and may give rise to damages, it is not an action for breach... ship stated to be 'in the port of amsterdam' wasn't - cond-
TERMS - how to tell - first test whether there is evidence of intention that there be contractual liability in respect of the accuracy of the statement.-
implied collateral contract - manufacturer had guaranteed that the paint would be fit for the pier...-
has person making the statement warranted its accuracy? not here - private seller - 1939 not 1948 model.. log book. merely representation.-
Motor dealer statement about mileage - contractual term. factors. i. time elapsed between statement/agreement ii. importance in mind fo partis. iii. included in contract? iv. party-
Collateral warranty - not a term of the principle agreement - warranted that forecast been made with reasonable care and skill-
defines a warranty - 'an agreement which REFERS to the subject matter of contract but is collateral to the main purpose'michael.. england player v goodnotoutfrench
rehearsal clause for opera - warranty only...-
Intermediate terms - 'deprive the other party of substantially the whole benefit... legal consequences (unless provided in contract) depend upon the event... not classficiation'right to repudiate depends on breach gravity
'party who has received a substantial benefit under the contrect may be precluded from pulling out' for sale of goods-
IMPLIED terms - business efficacy comes from here - without it, contract unworkable...-
The officious bystander - would be suppressed by a testy 'of course'-
no forget all these tests says Hoffmann, 'what would reasonable person take the contract as a whole to mean?'not an addition to the instrument, just spells out what it means
standard terms operate as 'default rules' -
Terms implied by CUSTOM - must be strictly proved, recognized as legally binding and consistent with contract terms - 85% needed - not total consistency...-
' STATUTE - this act, s. 12 - title to goods, s.13 - description s.14 satisfactory quality 14(3) fit for purpose-
Court looks at the document to see what the terms are. 'reasonable person with ALL background knowledge available to the parties'But previous negotiations between parties are NOT a-
must be before contract - Hotel - paid - went up to disclaimer in room - too late. PS. 3 exceptions to signature binding. i. induced by misrep ii. non est factuum iii. doc doesn't Exclusion Clauses
conditions shown inside - i. too late, contract formed no choice whether or not to accept ii. Spurling development, so unreasonable need more effort to bring to attention-
incorporation by NOTICE may be binding even if C subjectively ignorant of the content - if the party seeking to rely has done what was reasonable to bring to attention...sign at desk sufficient
Terms printed on back of ticket not enough... deck chair collapse-
Onerous or unuusal terms... 'red ink on the face of the document with a red hand'-
onerous clauses need more bringing to attention - 'did not do what was necessary to draw this unreasonable and extortionate clause fairly to attention'brings Thornton commercial
does away with 'fundamental breach' - whether exemption clause worked depended on construction of contract-
if someone exposes goods to risks quite different from those contemplated in contract... cannot rely on contractual clauses protecting against liability within the four corners of K-... separate US and UK
dress for cleaning - what does this clause mean? 'excludes damage to beads and sequins' oral overrides total exemption. 'mustn't 'convey a false a impression'-
'Common law, while allowing freedom of contract, watches over to see that it is not abused.' useful denning quotationJL & S v RE
UCTA - company may deal as a consumer... car purchasemusic genre kust. brk. cl v UDT l
MISTAKE - objective test for agreement 'whatever a man's real intention may be.. if reasonable man would believe he was assenting to the term' bound...-
offer/acceptance not coincident - accept differently... two 'Peerless' sailing from Bombay...-
no character/content distinciton any more... also negligence no excuse when signing.. must exercise reasonable care...-
Rectification - i. doc must fail to express common intention of parties - (must be an agreement...) 2. contuing intentio - intent of parties express in prior uccord must continue uAS v NAIS...
there is NO equitable jurisdiciton to rescind a contract for common mistake of fact where the mistake is not sufficient to void at common law-
mistaken identity cases - can only happen when 'definite and identifiable' person... 'at time contract made identity must be of vital importance'rebut presumption of Phillips... they really checked.
contrast that with chemistry student... sells to fake actor greene, asked for proof.. tough.-
contract may be VOID for mistaken identity - identity of parites established by names in written contract - only Mr Patel could have signedthe second canadian rowing boat
Offer can only be accepted by person to whom addressed... 'how would reasonable person have interpreted the offer?'-
no contract if person accepting offer reasonably believes they are doing so from someone other than the real offeror...Blenkarn you rogue - void ab initio
unless you have a 3rd party in mind - you meant to contract with the offeror... Hallam & Co... fancy fake letterhead from Wallis... fraud yes - mistake no wallis you clever chap
face to face - assumption is you intended to deal with each other not someone else... 'I am Sir G Bullough' - voidable for fraud not mistake-
common mistake at common law - 'must render 'essentially different' from the thing believed...both contracted under common mistaken assumption - breach not in mind...-
'only where terms.... show that it was never intended to apply to the situation which in reality existed at the time, and risk of relevant mistake not allocated to one party'-
CA suggest 5 factors, i. common assumption as to state of affairs, ii. no warranty as to i by either party iii. non existence of i not attributable to either iv. non existence of i-
res extincta - existence of subject matter of contract mistake..-
res sua - already owned fishery - nothing to sell
if Contract good at law, equity would relieve party of consequence of mistake so long as not unjust to 3rd party. i. mistake fundamental ii. party seeking recission not at fault iinot any more you don't...
MISREP - partial disclosure - mirsep - 'the farm has been recently occupied at X' - omits to say can't find a new tenant...charlie... (gardner) v almost a hammer

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