Professor James Starcher
July 29, 2012
In the case of Carrie, Antonio and Norvel, Carrie offers to sell Antonio a set of legal encyclopedias for $300.00. Antonio says he has to think about it and will let Carrie know the next day. Norvel, who overheard the offer to Antonio, tells Carrie he accepts her offer. Carrie gives Norvel the encyclopedias in return for $300.00. The next day, Antonio, unaware of the transaction between Norvel and Carrie, accepts Carrie’s offer. Technically Carrie has not breached a valid contract with Antonio, as he had not accepted the terms of the agreement. There was also no contract between Norvel and Carrie formed since Norvel accepted an offer that was originally made for Antonio.
The first requirement of a valid contract is agreement. Because Antonio never agreed to Carrie’s offer there was never a contract created between them. This leaves Carrie free to do as she wishes with the encyclopedias. On the other hand, Carrie is not obligated to sell the encyclopedias to Norvel, as there is no contract between them since Carrie’s offer was originally made to Antonio. According to Miller, “generally, a third person can-not substitute for the offeree and effectively accept the offer” (Miller, 2008, p. 173). The offer is conditional to the identity of the offeree, so except in special situations, only the person to whom the offer is actually made can accept it and create a binding contract (Miller, 2008).
Only Antonio had the power to turn Carrie’s offer into a binding legal obligation by accepting the offer (Miller, 2008). This power was not indefinite and could be terminated by action of the parties or by operation of law through rejection, revocation, or counteroffer. For revocation to be effectively used the revocation must be communicated to the offeree prior to acceptance and can be done with an express repudiation of the offer, a statement expressing your...
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