CRCJ 3003 Lecture Notes - Lecture 5: Contract, Fax, Estoppel

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LAWS 2202
Feb 10
Elements of contracting
-mutual consent: needs to be informed.
-capacity: law must recognize ability for all parties to have given their consent. Age is a common
capacity marker. Many forms of legally bindings include provision where being of majority age is
required. Also includes those with developmental disabilities.
-purposeful character: contract must embody a bargain. Not neutral agreement. Doesn’t need to be
equal. Simply put, a bargain is struck.
-legal form: may be legal requirement for contracts to be enforceable.
Carlill v. Carbolic Smoke Ball
-Smoke ball put out ad saying if anyone uses this pharmaceutical product diligently and consistently
then you won’t get the flu. If you do then you are entitled to 100 pounds. A woman took the product
diligently and consistently and still got sick. She then sought to claim the 100 pounds she thought she
was owed.
-Carbolic Ball argued that no contract occurred since they did not know the plaintiff had entered the
agreement. No notice of agreement.
-Carbolic said they never accepted the contract.
-Court disagreed. They determine that classical form of notification isn’t feasible, but it formed specific
new form of contract.
-offer was made through the advertisement, and it was a serious offer. Plaintiff accepted offer by
purchasing product.
Offer and Acceptance
-in unilateral contract acceptance takes an atypical form.
-when dealing with offers and counter offers things get complicated.
-there is a possibility of negotiation. There are different moments during the negotiation.
-in standard setting: there is only one offer and an acceptance of that offer. However, if there’s
negotiation of price for example there is not offer and acceptance right away.
-Acceptance must be certain and complete. When counter offer is proposed, it must be accepted. A
contract is not begun by the proposition of a counter offer.
-Counter offer negates original offer.
-requests for information are not considered counter offer. Ex: asking when the purchase of a good will
be made after the acceptance of its price is made.
-as technology has evolved, so has contract law.
-With fax machines, contract is enacted when fax is received. This only includes fax sent during business
hours. Ex: if sent during night then enacted in the morning. If it sent during business hours and not read
it is still enacted if a reasonable person would have read it by a certain point
-court decided when email arrives to destination server then it is communicated. Regardless of whether
it has been read.
-court can sometimes interfere in radical cases of inequality
-consideration can only be used once. If you offer someone 100$ for a service. Both parties accept.
Something happens that makes the service more difficult. You still can’t ask for more money to do it
since it is now more difficult. Agreement has already been entered.
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