Elements of a Contract
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Many jurists have defined a contract in many ways. These definitions vary, depending on the circumstances in which the contract is used. However, the general definition of a contract refers to written or spoken agreement intended to be enforced by the law. It also refers to the act of entering a formal or legal binding agreement between two or more parties. Contracts are important and crucial in a society as they enhance mutual agreement between parties hence eliminate inter-party conflicts. Upon concluding a contract, there are mutual elements and rules which must be adhered to by both parties. These rules must earn respect and tough consequences in case contract is breached. The law of contract mainly affects traders and those in commercial business sphere.
In the case, agreement between Fabulous Hotel and me gives rise to employee-employer contract with two main characteristics namely plurality of persons and meeting of minds. Employment contract must bring about mutual agreement between the hotel and the worker. The following elements and the five elements of the contract exist for the agreement to be enforceable.
First, the contract proposed should be accepted by the parties involved (Cottier, 2006). In this case, one of the parties (Fabulous Hotel) makes a definite proposal pertaining to terms of employment. If I accept the Fabulous Hotel’s proposed employment contracts by signing them, then the contract become legally bound. In this case, accepting to sign terms stipulated in by the employer means the laws restrict me to work in another hotel in the same metropolitan. Therefore, my willingness to enter into a contractual obligation in return for a promise hinders me to work for another hotel within the metropolitan.
Secondly, for this contract to be enforceable, I together with Fabulous Hotel should have the consent to engage in legal consequences and obligations.Otherwise, the contract would have no meaning and anybody could violate the terms outlined in the given contract. Thus, the legal obligation makes the hotel and me abide by the contract whether favored or not. For instance, I cannot work in any other hotel for a period of two years after terminating the job as the Fabulous Hotel’s head chef. Violating the terms of the contract and signing another contract to work with the new hotel would result to my apprehension in the court. The consequences of breaking the contract would then be brought against as stated in the original contract (Cottier, 2006).
The third element of the contract is consideration. This is an important aspect for the contract to be enforceable. Depending on the situation, circumstances may force me to breach the contract. For instance, if the contact violates individual's freedom and rights, it can be violated. In the situation when my living standards and financial position deteriorates, the court can consider me and get into an agreement with fabulous hotel and reconsider restructuring terms of the original contract. However, if there is no major reason for consideration, the contract should not be violated under any circumstances (Neff, 2002).
The fourth element of the contract is the certainty of original terms of the contract.In regard to certainty of terms, both parties must be certain about the terms of the contract. Moreover, parties involved must agree upon the terms of the agreement before signing it. The court will enforce terms outlined in the original contract if and only if both parties are certain about stipulated terms. In addition, certainty of a contract means that Fabulous Hotel adheres to the terms of the contract and should not alter such terms without my consent. Therefore, contract terms can only be changed if there is a legally signed agreement between the two parties. The fifth element of the contract is an offer. Therefore, for the contract to be enforced there must be a clearly stated offer that will only elapse if it is withdrawn before acceptance (Neff, 2002). An example of an offer is an invitation to treat which serves as a declaration of willingness to negotiate among the parties entering into a contract.
An employment or a business contract is the most important legal transaction involved when joining or starting a business. Therefore, understanding of a contract law is essential for employment and business prosperity. All contract laws across the United States are either governed by UCC or the common law. This agreement lies within the jurisdiction of common law that covers contractual agreements between intangible assets, employment, insurance and estate services (Brown & Sukys, 2013). Therefore, contract between the Fabulous Hotel and me is governed by the common law as it entails employment agreement and the general business agreements. In addition, this contract is judge-made because it depends on the court decision.
The contact also qualifies to be governed by the common law or the UCC because its elements as stated above are against those of the common law. For instance, there are acceptance and offer, terms and promise to keep the offer open. Moreover, this contract is subject to be abided by the law as advocated by the UCC. In the case some terms of the contract are missing parties involved can add such terms as provided by the UCC (Brown & Sukys, 2013).
In conclusion, contract is a written and signed agreement between two parties abiding by the law. If one of the parties involved breaches the contract, he or she is eligible to face legal consequences. In the case, the five elements of the contract include offer, consideration, acceptance, legal consequences and obligations, and certainty. The case depicts both the provision of the universal law as well as those of UCC. The new agreement may not be enforced if there was a misinterpretation of the terms of the contract or if the contract is breached as a result of unavoidable circumstances such as accident.