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  • Contracts accounts for 143 out of 654 casebriefs.

Style of causeRatio

Adams v. Lindsell, [1818] EWHC KB J59.

Postal Rule: Contract is made when mail is sent, not received.

Aluminum Co. of America v Essex Group, Inc., 499F. Supp. 53, 72 (W.D. Pa. 1980)

Doctrine of frustration only applies when frustrating event is substantial, it must be so severe that it cannot be fairly regarded as being party of the risk, which had been assumed by the parties
**Minor changes are not sufficient

A mere change in degree of difficulty or expense due to such causes as increased wages, prices of raw materials, or costs of construction, unless well beyond the normal range, does not amount to impracticability since it is the sort of risk a fixed-price contract is intended to cover

Anglia Television Ltd. v. Reed, [1971] 3 All E.R. 690

Can sue for lost profits (expectation) or expenditure (reliance) but not both. Can recover wasted expenditure when flow from beach.
**Wasted expenditure before the breach can also be recovered when the defendant reasonably contemplated that the breach would result in the loss

Asamera Oil Corporation v. Sea Oil & General Corporation, [1979] 1 SCR 633

In order to seek specific performance as opposed to damages, must have a legitimate and substantial interest (can justify one’s inaction and might recover losses), and onus is on the plaintiff to prove legitimate interest.
**If not legitimate and substantial must claim damages and have duty to mitigate

Attorney General of British Columbia v Deeks Sand and Grave Co, [1956] SCR 336.

A compromise of a serious claim if honestly made can be a valuable consideration, whether or not the claim could have been successful. In other words, a party can in effect surrender potential rights by agreeing to a claim which subsequent events show to be unenforceable in law.

If parties had an honest belief that there could be a possible successful legal action then the agreement not to go to court is good consideration.

Bank of NS v Maclellan

With acceptable consideration, a debtor can pay less than the full amount owed to a creditor (an exception to the rule established in the decision of Foakes v Beer).

Bell v Lever Brothers Ltd [1932] AC 161

When mutual mistake, the mistake must be fundamental and a K is void when:
*Mistake as to subject matter - Before or at the time of contracting if the subject matter of the K is destroyed or doesn’t exist
*Mistake as to quality – only if the subject matter is essential different from what they thought they were contracting for

Beswick v Beswick (1966) 3 W.L.R. 396

The contacting party is entitled by himself, alone, or jointly with the 3rd person, to have the contract performed to its terms, and the court will decree specific performance for it.

General rule can’t get specific performance for just a payment of a sum of money

BG Checo International Ltd v British Columbia Hydro and Power Authority, [1993] 1 SCR 12

Concurrency rule: If the tort duty is not contradicted by the contract, it remains intact and may be sued upon.

Blair v Western Mutual Benefit Association, [1972] 4 WWR 284.

(1) A party must intend to make an offer for it to be an offer capable of acceptance, and it must be communicated to the party to whom it is directed in order to prove that the offeror intended to be legally bound.

(2) It makes no difference if the offeree knows about the offer by another means – it must be deliberately communicated to them by the offeror.

Bollenback v Continental Casualty Company, 1965 Oregan SC

In calculation of restitution, P is entitled to recover consideration for which no benefit was received.
**When an insurance contract is rescinded the insured is entitle to recover premiums paid less any benefit they may have received while the contract was in force.
You can only elect rescission or damages, not both.

Byrne v. Van Tienhoven (1880) C.P.D. 344

The mailbox rule does not apply to revocation; revocation sent by post does not take effect until received by offeree. An offer cannot be revoked after it has been accepted.

Canadian Dyers Association Ltd. v Burton (1920), 47 OLR 259 (HL)

A mere statement of price does not constitute an offer to sell; it is no more than an invitation to treat. However, courts will consider the language used and context, in addition to subsequent actions of both parties when determining whether an offer was made.

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

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.

Carr v Canadian Northern Railway Co. (1907)

Action can be constituted as acceptance with the proper conditions.