Issue: Whether Tom is bound by the contract of selling half of his Mango Farm to Nigel?
Rule: Exceptions to Signature rule under English Contract Law.
The Signature rule specifies that the parties signing a contractual document become bound by the contract if the person has signed the contract. No defense of the same can be taken by raising the ground that the person was unaware of the terms of the contract at the time of signing it and has not read those terms. The fact that the party has not read the terms of the contract before signing it is irrelevant. However, there are some exceptions to this “Signature rule” of the English law for the cases where the contract was signed because of any fraudulent information provided to the signing party or the person was compelled to sign the document by misrepresenting any fact or by keeping him under any duress or undue influence or the signature on the contract have been attained by any unconscionable conduct. This was the incorporation of the contract by signature and the same has happened between Tom and Nigel. Nigel compelled Tom to sign the contract written on a tissue paper when Tom was in a state of intoxication due to alcohol and thus was not in his sound mind.
The element of duress was used by Nigel to gain the signature of Tom on the contract and that too the consideration for the same was inappropriate. The current market value of the Mango Farms was $500,000 despite the losses but still, Nigel just purchased half the share or the farms worth $250,000 for $150 only. This signifies the dishonest intention of Nigel towards Tom for gaining the Mango farms fraudulently. Therefore, the same act was committed by Nigel to compel Tom under duress to gain the share in the farms. In the cases where duress is proven, the contracts are voidable therefore, Tom is not bound by signing the contract to Nigel.
Tom is not bound by the contract for selling his half share of the Mango farms to Nigel since the same was done fraudulently by Nigel while Tom was in a state of intoxication.
Issue: Whether Mary can sue Riley for breach of the contract?
Rule: The postal rule of the Australian contract law.
Application: The Australian contract law provides a postal rule that states that the acceptance of the offer shall be communicated to the offeror. Under this rule, the acceptance is said to be complete at the moment when the post containing the acceptance was sent by the acceptor of the contract. According to this, Mary can sue Riley for the breach of contract. However, under an exception, the Postal rule does not apply when any other form of acceptance has already been provided as the mode of acceptance. Also here, the mode to order, manage, and pay for the orders was made through the webpage, therefore the postal rule does not apply here as this is an exception of the same. Riley, after receiving the letter on Tuesday still tried to complete the order if he had the same bag in stock but the bag was already out of stock. This signifies the intention of Riley to complete the order and comply with the contract. Therefore, Mary can’t sue Riley since his intention to contract was present. Mary can, however, ask Riley to provide the bag once it gets back in stock.
Mary cannot sue Riley for the breach of the contract since the intention to contract was present from Riley’s end. However, Mary can ask Riley to provide the bag once it gets back in stock.
Issue: Whether Fast and Fancy Motors can legally cancel the lease contract and re-possess the Ferrari from Calvin?
Application: The consideration is paid against the repayment of the services or the promise made by the promisor to the promise. Consideration is paid by the acceptor of the offer to make the agreement legally binding and valid. A contract without consideration is void. It is usually considered as a value to be paid in exchange against the promise which holds some value in the eyes of law to make the contract in balance for both the parties. When Calvin got possession of the Ferrari, he agreed to pay a sum of money to Fast and Fancy Motors as a consideration but on failure to pay the amount, Fast and Fancy motors are eligible to re-possess the Ferrari since the non-payment of the consideration results in the breach of the contract thus making it void.
Conclusion: Yes, Fast and Fancy motors can legally cancel the lease contract and re-possess the Ferrari from Calvin since he has not been able to pay the consideration that was to be paid against the terms of the lease contract.
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