Issues surrounding contract law require careful consideration with regard to the true existence of a contract. Contracts may be entered into upon whereby one party makes an offer and another party accepts the original offer. Verbal contracts become a bit more perplexing due to the matter in question being one party’s word versus the others. Individual’s anticipating the selling of their personal property must be aware of the possibility of implied contractual agreements. Anyone considering purchasing property from an individual unlicensed seller must be made equally aware of standing offers and irrevocable offers.
Contract law is meticulous concerning the many different forms of contracts. The scenario describes the seller, Carrie, making a verbal offer to sell her personal property to the perspective buyer, Antonio, for the sum of three-hundred dollars. The perspective buyer agreed to take the offer under advisement and provide the seller with a decision the following day. A third party, Norvel, suggested to the seller that he would accept the offer, to which the seller agreed. The following day, the perspective buyer informed the seller that he accepted the offer. This scenario raises many legal questions.
Carrie is under no obligation to sell her personal property to Norvel. The fact that Norvel overheard the original conversation between Carrie and Antonio is a matter of coincidence. Carrie never made an offer to sell her property to Norvel, but rather the offer was made to Antonio. If Norvel had revealed his interest in buying the property while Antonio and Carrie were discussing the possible sale, then he could have made an offer to purchase the property from Carrie at that time. In this instance, Norvel did not reveal his offer in the presence of Antonio.
LEGAL ISSUES 3 Since the scenario indicates that Carrie did in fact sell her property to Norvel which breaches a valid contract with Antonio. Carrie was bound under a verbal contract of sale. (Garner, 2001). Antonio had received the offer and was left to consider the issues contained therein and agreed to render his decision the following day. Antonio had an understanding and assumption that an implied in-fact contract existed (Garner, 2001).
The only party to the matter that can legally accept the offer of sale is Antonio (Pakroo, 2008). Carrie verbally made an offer to Antonio to sell her property for a specific price. She did not extend this offer verbally or in writing to Norvel. Norvel just happened to be in the same place at the time the offer was being made. This offer does not in any way include him in the negotiations of sale and purchase. Carrie can easily revoke her original offer to Antonio by contacting him and verbally expressing her intention to withdrawal the offer to sell, but this action must take place before Antonio accepts the offer (Pakroo, 2008).
The scenario specifies that Antonio contacted Carrie the following day, as agreed, and accepted the offer. This clearly shows that Carrie had not withdrawn her offer of sale to Antonio. With regard to Norvel, there is no offer to be revoked as she never offered or contracted to sell her property to Norvel. Norvel’s eagerness to purchase the property raises no legal consideration in this matter. Before one attempts to sell his or her personal property, it is advised that they research the legalities of contracted sales.
Contracts can be created merely on an offer made to sell. In some cases, the perspective buyer can pursue the tort in civil court citing damages. Buyers should also beware. It is always best to get offers and provisions in writing rather than just relying on one’s word. References Garner, B. (2001). Black’s Law Dictionary (2nd ed. ). St. Paul, MN: West Group Publishing. Pakroo, P. (2008). The small business start-up-kit: a step-by-step legal guide (5th ed. ). Berkley, CA: Delta Printing Solutions, Inc.