Five Elements Of Contract Law

Submitted By Raeqer
Words: 1179
Pages: 5

In order to advise Buford, contract laws must be discussed. The contract between Frank and Buford is the first one to be discussed. Five elements- Agreement (offer/acceptance), Consideration, Voluntary Compliance, Capacity and Legality are must be met in order to validation of this contract. Firstly, there is a definite and communicated offer and the acceptance of that offer between Frank and Buford, as they haggle over the price and agreed. Thus, there is an offer and acceptance between Frank and Buford and they satisfied the first element. Secondly, the other element is Consideration. Because, both parties seek a benefit and pay a detriment in this agreement this is Consideration; therefore the second element is also met. Thirdly, Voluntary Compliance is the other element which must be discussed. A person cannot be forced into a contract, because of this, neither of the parties is forced into this contract there is Voluntary Compliance which means that the third element is met as well. Fourthly, Capacity is the other element. According to contract law; if a person lacks capacity, a contract is not enforceable. The problem with capacity in this case is Frank’s age. He is 17, and therefore a minor. If a major and minor enter into a contract, the minor, in this case, Frank has the right to get away from the contract. So, Frank has chance to get rid of the contract, which is a problem for Buford. Buford’s interest would have been protected better if he asked about Frank’s age and checked proof of age. That doesn’t mean Buford has no options. There are doctrines that support him in this situation. For example, Tools of the Minor’s Trade Doctrine can apply in this situation. According to this doctrine, if the minor buys a tool of the minor’s trade, the court can force the minor to put the major at the same position as the time of the formation of the contract. An International Harvester Hay Machine and three heavy duty pairs of Osh-Gosh Coveralls are considered as farming equipment and are therefore tools of trade. So, Tools of the Minor’s Trade Doctrine applies in this case which would mean that Frank can be forced by the court to put Buford at the same position as the time of the formation of the contract. Assuming all the things to be done were done, the procedure was followed correctly, the contract is legal which satisfies the last element. In order to have a valid contract all the elements need to be met and since capacity is not met, this contract is voidable.
In order to protect Buford’s interests, that is a wise step to ask for a guarantor. In this case of a Contract of Guarantee; Frank Buford is the Obligor, Buford is the Obligee, and Fred Buford is the Guarantor. The Statute of Frauds lists Contracts of Guarantee as one of the contracts that need to be writing. The Contract of Guarantee is not in a written form in this case, therefore it is not enforceable. Normally, in the case of Buford not receiving any payment from Frank, Buford would demand that Fred, as the guarantor, pay the debt. But the contract of guarantee is not enforceable because it’s not written. In this case, as stated in the Leading Object Doctrine, if Buford can prove that Fred became a guarantor for the purpose of obtaining personal economic advantage, in this case, the International Harvester Hay Machine and the coveralls, then this contract doesn’t have to be written. If Fred and Frank share a legal interest for the asset, they can be considered as co-obligors, as a result can be sued for the first contract between Frank and Buford. If Buford cannot prove the legal interest, he can go for Promissory Estoppel. If he loses on law, he can sue in equity. Three elements need to be proved for an argument for Promissory Estoppel; Justifiable Reliance, Substantial Reliance, and Unjust Enrichment. Buford justifiably relied on this contract, he gave the coveralls and the machine to Frank proving that Buford performed as stated in the