What is contract law? What are the BASICS? What is in a contract? Offer? Acceptance? Consideration?
Believe it or not, contract issues are at center of every transaction, from renting a car, to buying a house, to being employed, to hiring someone to develop your website, to going to the movies, to downloading software. Indeed, contract law takes center stage in our transactional economy.
So what is a contract? It’s an agreement between two (or more) parties. When you agree to do something—and all the terms of that agreement are met—you have a binding and enforceable contract, which can be upheld in a court of law (you can win money damages) or equity (you can compel someone to do what they promised to do). Most contracts are in writing, but oral agreements can also be enforced. However, oral agreements, while enforceable in most states, are difficult to prove. Invariably it comes down to one person’s word against another’s. Therefore it’s advisable to get everything in writing, or at a minimum, create a paper trail.
For an agreement to be a legally binding contract, the following is the first of essential terms needed for an enforceable contract:
1. There must be a valid OFFER. An offer contains the terms that define the rights and obligations of each party involved. Generally, one party makes an offer to do something, in exchange for something of value from the other party. Once an offer has been made, it stays open until it is accepted, rejected, withdrawn, or until it expires.
Okay, look for the next post for term #2!