Essential Elements of a Contract

Topics: Contract, Offer and acceptance, Contract law Pages: 2 (507 words) Published: March 18, 2006
A contract is a "promise" or an "agreement" that is enforced or recognized by the law, whether implied or expressed. There must be an agreement, which consists of an agreement, an intention to create legal relations, and consideration.

A contract is said to come into existence when acceptance of an offer has been communicated to the offerer by the offeree. An offer is an expression of willingness to contract on certain terms, made with the intention that it shall become binding as soon as it is accepted by the person to whom it is addressed, the "offeree".

Acceptance is a final and unqualified expression of assent to the terms of an offer. For a contract based on offer and acceptance to be enforced, the terms must be capable of determination in a way that it is clear that the parties assent was given to the same terms. The terms, like the manifestation of assent itself, are determined objectively.

A contract will be formed when the parties give objective manifestation of an intent to form the contract. Of course, the assent must be given to terms of the agreement. Usually this involves the making by one party of an offer to be bound upon certain terms, and the other parties' acceptance of the offer on the same terms.

The essential requirement is that there be evidence that the parties had each from an objective perspective engaged in conduct manifesting their assent, and a contract will be formed when the parties have met such a requirement. It is argued that a contract requires for the parties to have a true meeting of the minds between the parties. A party could resist a claim of breach by proving that although it may have appeared objectively that he intended to be bound by the agreement, he had never truly intended to be bound. This is unsatisfactory, as the other parties have no means of knowing their counterparts' undisclosed intentions or understandings. They can only act upon what a party reveals objectively to be his intent. Hence, an actual...
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