In the given facts, HI, not receiving the postage of acceptance sent by C on time due to strike at Australia Post, gave the order to someone else. C can plead that firstly, there were no certain means of communication decided between the two parties that they shall intimate each other via post. Secondly, HI sent the message of cancellation of order via fax, which it could earlier too have faxed before placing the order with someone else. C did his bid by posting the acceptance and based on precedents mentioned above, acceptance of offer had been done on C's part and now HI must accept and pay him for the gyprock sheets.
To conclude, in the given facts, had HI contacted C via email in Monday morning of the offer and in return of that, C had disseminated its acceptance through email the same day, but due to some server problem with that of HI, he could not know of C’s acceptance, then HI could not be compelled to accept the offer and pay to C. This is because HI did not receive the confirmation from C and also it cancelled the offer on Monday evening itself by fax to C.
Can Samatha ask for the reward?
As per the rules of contract, any offer made to the public at large is an offer. As in Carlill v Carbolic Smoke Ball Co (UK)an offer can be made to an individual, or a group, or public at large. Acceptance, on the other hand, could be written, oral or by conduct. This means that conduct must occur is the retaliation of the offer. In Crown v Clarke, it was held that if a bystander can conclude that the conduct of the offeree was in relation to the offer of the offeror, then the contract is binding.
In the given facts, Jenny made an offer to reward any person who returns her organizer. Samantha, unaware of the reward find the organizer and returns him to Jenny. This is the formation of a valid contract as Samantha accepted Jenny's offer by conduct and hence Jenny is entitled to pay Samantha the reward as promised.
Can Joe be successful in returning the business to Simone and damages?
Fraudulent misrepresentation is what someone lies or tells false things about anything to trick the other into a contract. This can be through words, gestures, body motion or by silence. To prove this, the victim must prove that-
In With v O’Flanagan,the court held that failure of the vendor to give the true information to the purchaser was a misrepresentation.
The above five elements can be satisfied in the given facts Simone misrepresented the truth about the café to Joe, in lieu of which Joe agreed to buy the café. He, as a result, suffered damages and is legally liable to take back the money given and return the business.
Can the senior employee plead the defence of duress?
To claim duress, one of the contracting party has to exert illegitimate pressure on the other to induce him to enter into a contract. This involves the killing of a person, threatening to burn down anyone's property etc. Remedies are available under Section50 of The Australian Consumer Law, where the corporations if uses any physical force or undue harassment or coercion in relation to supply of goods or services, then that is duress.
In the given facts, the daughter of the senior employee stole $50,000 from the company and as a result, the managing partner asked the employee to return the money. If not he shall report the matter to the police. So that is not coercion or any undue influence as there is no pressure of entering into the contract from the managing partner. He is just asking the employee to return the money which his daughter took from the company. Hence the employee cannot avail the plea of duress.
LawTeacher. 2013. Acceptance Lecture. [Online]. Available at: https://www.lawteacher.net/modules/contract-law/formation/acceptance/lecture.php?vref=1 [Accessed on: 8 September 2020].
Rivera, J. 2019. Definition: What is fraudulent misrepresentation? [Online].Available at: https://www.legalmatch.com/law-library/article/fraudulent-misrepresentation.html (Accessed on 8 September 2020)
Australian Contract Law. 2018. Avoidance of contract: Duress. [Online]. Available at: https://www.australiancontractlaw.com/contractlaw/avoidance-duress.html (Accessed on 8 September 2020).
Henthorn v Fraser  2 Ch 27
Household Fire Insurance v Grant  4 Ex D 216
Tenax Steamship Co v Owners of the Motor Vessel Brimnes  EWCA Civ 15.
Carlill v Carbolic Smoke Ball Co (UK) Court of Appeal  1 QB 256;  EWCA Civ 1
Crown v Clarke (1927) 40 CLR 227
With v O’Flanagan  Ch 575
Australian Consumer Law
 LawTeacher. 2013. Acceptance Lecture. [Online]. Available at: https://www.lawteacher.net/modules/contract-law/formation/acceptance/lecture.php?vref=1 [Accessed on: 8 September 2020].
  2 Ch 27
  4 Ex D 216
 Ibid 1
  EWCA Civ 15.
 Court of Appeal  1 QB 256;  EWCA Civ 1
 (1927) 40 CLR 227
 Rivera, J. 2019. Definition: What is fraudulent misrepresentation? [Online].Available at: https://www.legalmatch.com/law-library/article/fraudulent-misrepresentation.html (Accessed on 8 September 2020)
  Ch 575
 Australian Contract Law. 2018. Avoidance of contract: Duress. [Online]. Available at: https://www.australiancontractlaw.com/contractlaw/avoidance-duress.html (Accessed on 8 September 2020).
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