Offer and Acceptance - Contract Law

1007 Words Nov 6th, 2012 5 Pages
The first element that must be looked into in order to advice the legal positions of Celia and her potential buyers is the character of the advertisement. It has to be distinguished between an advertisement which constitutes an offer or an invitation to treat.

An advertisement may be considered an offer if it is clear, precise, definite and leaves nothing open for negotiation. This was established by Leftkowitz v Great Minneapolis Surplus Store involving a case of the sale of two mink scarves and a stole. The phrase “ £10,000 for the lot, no offers” could be an element of an offer, indicating that price is not negotiable. It can also be interpreted in such that the bags are sold in a lot therefore, a customer cannot request for a
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With this information, it is not logical to immediately terminate an offer if acceptance is not made through email. Otherwise, why would Celia have posted her postal address? This gives an impression that acceptance through email is not compulsory. Baljit’s choice of acceptance was through post. In line with this, the postal rule states that acceptance by mail is valid on posting. So far as the postal address and postage is included, there is no reason for failure of acceptance. This was established by Adams v Lindsell. As the postal rule applies, Baljit’s acceptance can be deemed successful as her letter was still posted within the timeframe stipulated and can be qualified as a qualified customer.

The postal rule does not apply to emailing. The principle of this precedent was initiated from the case of Entores v Miles Far East Corporation. This is held that acceptance through instantaneous mode of communication is only effective once it has been received. It follows that Samantha has complied with the prescribed mode of acceptance. However, when the issue of emailing as a form of acceptance arises, it forms many complications. It is questionable if it can be deemed ‘instantaneous mode of acceptance’ as it may take hours to arrive depending on the route, server and internet provider. Hence when dealing with a business, the seller should state details in terms of the estimated time the email should be received. Upon receiving, only then is the acceptance
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