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Carlill v. Carbolic Smoke Ball Co. [1893] Q.B. 256 (C.A.)

Facts:

D put ad in newspaper. 100$ reward for anyone using ball who gets flu. Difficulties in ad about 2 week period what it means. D says put 1000$ in bank to show sincerity. P got sick

Ratio:

For unilateral contracts the notification of acceptance need not precede the performance, and unless the language clearly indicates, it does not require notice of the acceptance apart from the notice of performance.

Analysis:

No problem with making an offer to the whole world – as long as intention to make offer is there. This ad is an offer to pay 100 to anybody who will perform these conditions, and the performance of these conditions is the acceptance of the offer

General Rule: to make a binding contract – and offer is made, accepted, and that acceptance should be notified:
**Unilateral contracts are an exception to this rule
***Was a continuing offer – was not revoked
***Person who makes offer gets to notice contemporaneously w/ notice of performance of the condition
***The language of the person making the offer, and from the nature of the transaction – is what you look at to determine what they require for acceptance

Holding:

D must perform the promise

Comments:

CANT USE PROMISSORY ESTOPPEL TO CREATE A CONTRACT ONLY TO MODIFY IT


Discussion

  1. Fiat Justitia Ruat Caelum 32

    Thanks!

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