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Chapter

Cover Concentrate Questions and Answers Equity and Trusts

3. The Three Certainties and Formalities  

The Concentrate Questions and Answers series offer the best preparation for tackling exam questions. Each book includes typical questions, bullet-pointed answer plans, suggested answers, and author commentary. This book offers advice on what to expect in exams and how best to prepare. This chapter covers questions on the three certainties and formalities.

Chapter

Cover Card & James' Business Law

6. The formation of the contract  

This chapter examines the legal requirements relating to the formation of a contract. It discusses the five essential elements of a contract, namely offer, acceptance (offer and acceptance are collectively referred to as ‘agreement’), certainty, consideration, and the intention to create legal relations. It analyses these individual requirements in detail and considers the courts’ approach in determining whether an enforceable contract is present or not. This chapter also explains the principles of different types of contracts, namely the distinction between bilateral and unilateral contracts, and how the normal rules of contractual formation are modified in the cases involving unilateral contracts.

Chapter

Cover Koffman, Macdonald & Atkins' Law of Contract

3. Certainty and formalities  

This chapter looks at the need for certainty and formalities in contracting. It explores case law which illustrates, on the one hand, that a willingness of the parties to make a contract does not necessarily amount to a legally binding agreement, whilst on the other hand, there is potential for the court to fill in any gaps to give effect to agreements. The issues surrounding an agreement which is expressed to be ‘subject to contract’ are explored, as too are the reasons for when contract formalities may be required. There is discussion of electronic signatures in light of the Law Commission Report on Electronic Execution of Documents and the case of Neocleous v Rees.

Chapter

Cover Contract Law

2. Agreement  

How does contract law determine whether the parties have committed to the contract and what each has committed to? This chapter discusses: the primacy of the objective test of intentions; the offer and acceptance test of agreement and what happens when one party appears to be mistaken about what is in the contract; when an offer is terminated so that any purported acceptance is ineffectual; assessment of the mirror image approach; the requirement of certainty; the nature of the requirement of intention to create legal relations; and the law’s approach to the benefits conferred in anticipation of contracts that do not materialise.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Public Law

R v Secretary for the Home Department, ex parte Pierson [1998] AC 539, House of Lords  

Essential Cases: Public Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in R v Secretary for the Home Department, ex parte Pierson [1998] AC 539, House of Lords. This case explored whether a decision-maker acting in a quasi-judicial capacity was bound by the same decision-making standards as the courts including, for example, whether retrospective decision-making was permitted. As well as these rule of law considerations, it also raises questions as regards the division or separation of functions within the constitution. The document also includes supporting commentary and questions from author Thomas Webb.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Public Law

R v Secretary for the Home Department, ex parte Pierson [1998] AC 539, House of Lords  

Essential Cases: Public Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in R v Secretary for the Home Department, ex parte Pierson [1998] AC 539, House of Lords. This case explored whether a decision-maker acting in a quasi-judicial capacity was bound by the same decision-making standards as the courts including, for example, whether retrospective decision-making was permitted. As well as these rule of law considerations, it also raises questions as regards the division or separation of functions within the constitution. The document also includes supporting commentary and questions from author Thomas Webb.

Chapter

Cover Steiner and Woods EU Law

6. General Principles of Law  

This chapter examines the development of the general principles by the Court of Justice (CJ) to support the protection of human rights in the European Union (EU) law within the scope of EU law. It analyses the relationship of the general principles derived from the CJ’s jurisprudence to the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) and the European Union Charter of Fundamental Rights (EUCFR), which includes substantive rights and procedural rights, as well as the principles of proportionality and legal certainty. It discusses the possible accession of the EU to the ECHR and the implications of Opinion 2/13. It suggests that although the protection of human rights has been more visible since the Lisbon Treaty and there are now more avenues to such protection, it is debatable whether the scope and level of protection have increased.

Chapter

Cover Complete Contract Law

4. Certainty and the Intention to Enter a Legal Relationship  

This chapter investigates the basic law on the certainty and intention requirements in the creation of an agreement. To be legally enforceable as a contract, the agreement must be sufficiently certain and show an intention to enter a legal relationship. Agreements can be uncertain because they are vague, or because they are incomplete. This can indicate there was no intention to enter a legal relationship. The courts must not rewrite the agreement; they must simply interpret it. If an agreement is incomplete, the courts may decide that the missing terms are implied, and this is more likely if there has been performance. A gap in an incomplete agreement can be filled if the parties have provided a mechanism for doing so, or if the terms can be construed so as to do so. The chapter then differentiates between an agreement to negotiate (a lock-in agreement) and agreements not to negotiate with other parties (lock-out agreements). Agreements between businesses are presumed to be made with the intention to be legally binding, but the facts, the interpretation of the terms, or the surrounding circumstances could mean there was no such intention.

Chapter

Cover Human Rights Law Directions

13. Article 7: no punishment without law  

Without assuming prior legal knowledge, books in the Directions series introduce and guide readers through key points of law and legal debate. It discusses European Convention law and relates it to domestic law under the HRA. Questions, discussion points, and thinking points help readers to engage fully with each subject and check their understanding as they progress and knowledge can be tested by self-test questions and exam questions at the chapter end. This chapter focuses on Article 7, which prohibits the retrospective application of criminal laws. This means that a person should not be convicted for an offence that did not exist at the time he or she committed the acts in question, nor should any punishment they receive be one that was not available to the courts at that time. Article 7 also embodies the principle of legal certainty in the context of criminal law. In order for people to adjust their conduct accordingly, they must be able to know the laws that apply to them and be able to foresee the circumstances in which laws will be applied. As an aspect of the ‘rule of law’, Article 7 embodies the idea that the law should not be used arbitrarily.

Chapter

Cover Steiner & Woods EU Law

6. General principles of law  

This chapter examines the development of the general principles by the Court of Justice (CJ) to support the protection of human rights in the European Union (EU) law within the scope of EU law. It analyses the relationship of the general principles derived from the CJ’s jurisprudence to the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) and the European Union Charter of Fundamental Rights (EUCFR), which includes substantive rights and procedural rights, as well as the principles of proportionality and legal certainty. It discusses the possible accession of the EU to the ECHR and the implications of Opinion 2/13. It suggests that although the protection of human rights has been more visible since the Lisbon Treaty and there are now more avenues to such protection, it is debatable whether the scope and level of protection has increased.