The Code Of The Postal Rule

998 Words4 Pages
The law of contract requires a firm offer and acceptance to be in place and acceptance of an offer by post is referred to as the postal rule. This rule was created in 1818 and is a non instantaneous method of communication. The postal rule will be examined alongside offer and acceptance and the effectiveness of the postal rule today will be analysed. Other methods of communication such as email and faxes will also be explored. Relevant cases will be provided as evidence for any points made. A conclusion will be reached with the evaluation of the effectiveness of the postal rule today.

An offer is an expression of willingness to form a contract and is made with the intention to be bound by specified terms once it has been accepted. Acceptance of an offer is necessary for a contract to be formed and the postal rule is a way of providing acceptance. In order for a contract to be established, it is important that an offer is made and the acceptance of the offer is communicated to the offeror. However, this is not necessarily the case under the postal rule, once acceptance is communicated by post; the contract is formed as soon as the letter is sent. This is set out in the case of Adams v Linsell defendants offer was delayed which subsequently caused the plaintiffs communication of acceptance. The defendants sold the goods to a third party. The court decided a contract was formed before the transaction with the third party had took place, on the basis that the acceptance was
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