Contract Law Essay, Problem Question, Agreement Contract Law Problem Question

1126 words - 5 pages

Mick v Yummy Chocolate
Mick’s case is dependent on whether he was in contract with Yummy Chocolate corporation or not and whether Yummy Chocolate have breached that contract. If there is no contract the second issue of breach does not arise. It can be argued that the offer was merely an invitation to treat. In Partridge v. Crittenden [1968]1, the plaintiff placed an ad in Cage and Aviary Birds which stated "Bramblefinch cocks and hens, 25s each". He was convicted of the offence of offering for sale a live wild bird. His conviction was quashed on appeal, where the court held that advertisements were merely invitations to treat so that he could not have committed the offence of "offering for sale". However, this was not the case in Mick v Yummy Chocolate, it is suggested that because the offer itself manifest an intention to be bound by it, then the advert constituted an offer not a mere invitation to treat. In the case of Carlill v Carbolic Smoke Ball Co. [1892]2 where the offeror displayed an advertisement saying that £100 would be paid to anyone who could, use their smoke ball product for 2 weeks and then contract influenza. The offer stated that £1000 had been deposited in a bank, and the address of that bank was given. Mrs. Carlill followed the instructions and contracted influenza but the Carbolic Smoke Ball company refused to pay. The Court of Appeal held that an advertisement can constitute a unilateral contract, which can be accepted by fulfilling the conditions of the contract; where no formal acceptance required. Similarly, in the case of Mick v Yummy Chocolate, the advert had a character of an offer in which demonstrated sufficient certainty. Moreover, despite the fact that it was made to the world “unilaterally” it was targeted to a much smaller group of people. In other words, it was targeted to a certain age group; the ones who are physically fit and capable of walking that distance.
The second issue is whether Mick accepted the offer. It is a general rule that in order for an offer to be binding, communication of acceptance must occur, however, this is not the case in unilateral contracts. In unilateral contracts, acceptance comes in a form of commencing an offer’s conditions and does not need to be communicated this was shown in Carlill v Carbolic Smoke Ball Company [1892]. In Harris v Nickerson [1893]3, the defendant advertised that an auction of certain goods would take place at a stated time and place. The plaintiff travelled to the auction only to find that items had been withdrawn. He claimed compensation for breach of contract, arguing that the advertisement constituted an offer, and his travelling to the auction, an acceptance by conduct. The court held that the advertisement was not an offer but merely an invitation to treat and the contract is not about the time and effort spent in doing an offer but rather the performance its conditions. Therefore, it could be argued that Mick’s acceptance of the offer was not...

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