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Chapter

Cover Anson's Law of Contract

21. Third Parties  

Jack Beatson, Andrew Burrows, and John Cartwright

This Chapter deals with the scope of a valid contract when formed, and the question: to whom does the obligation extend? This question is considered under two separate headings: (1) the acquisition of rights by a third party, and (2) the imposition of liabilities upon a third party. At common law the general rule is that no one but the parties to a contract can be entitled under it, or bound by it. This principle is known as that of privity of contract.

Chapter

Cover Anson's Law of Contract

22. Assignment  

Jack Beatson, Andrew Burrows, and John Cartwright

This Chapter considers assignment, that is to say, the transfer of B’s contractual rights against A to C by means of an agreement between B (the assignor) and C (the assignee) irrespective of A’s (the debtor’s) consent. It examines the rules governing assignment and distinguishes it from several similar concepts: the negotiability of ‘negotiable instruments’, vicarious performance, novation, and the transfer of rights and liabilities by operation of law.

Chapter

Cover Anson's Law of Contract

20. Limitation of Actions  

Jack Beatson, Andrew Burrows, and John Cartwright

At common law, lapse of time does not affect contractual rights. But it is the policy of the law to discourage stale claims because, after a long period, a defendant may not have the evidence to rebut such claims and should be in a position to know that after a given time an incident which might have led to a claim is finally closed. Accordingly, in the Limitation Act 1980, the Legislature has laid down certain periods of limitation after the expiry of which no action can be maintained. Equity has developed a doctrine of laches, under which a claimant who has not shown reasonable diligence in prosecuting the claim may be barred from equitable relief.

Book

Cover JC Smith's The Law of Contract
Driven by exposition of the leading cases, JC Smith’s The Law of Contract offers the perfect balance between accessibility and authority. The strong focus on cases guides the reader through the intricacies of contract law with expert analysis ensuring key points are clear. The text begins with an introduction to contractual rights and duties. It looks at objectivity in contract law, the formation of bilateral and unilateral contracts, contract as agreement, offeror and offeree, estoppel, legal relations, and the role of third parties. It also considers the terms of the contract, interpretation of the contract, implication and rectification, and exclusion clauses and unfair terms. It goes on to look at issues such as duress, undue influence, good faith, capacity, illegality, contractual assumptions, breach of contract, remedies and damages, and remedies beyond compensatory damages.

Chapter

Cover Cheshire, Fifoot, and Furmston's Law of Contract

16. The Voluntary Assignment of Contractual Rights and Liabilities  

M P Furmston

This chapter discusses the assignment of contractual rights and liabilities. It covers the assignability of contractual rights; rules that govern assignments, whether statutory or equitable; novation distinguished from assignment; and negotiability distinguished from assignability.

Chapter

Cover Cheshire, Fifoot, and Furmston's Law of Contract

17. The Involuntary Assignment of Contractual Rights and Liabilities  

M P Furmston

This chapter discusses the law on the automatic assignment of contractual rights and liabilities, which may occur upon the death or bankruptcy of one of the contracting parties.

Chapter

Cover Poole's Textbook on Contract Law

1. Introduction to the law of contract  

Robert Merkin, Séverine Saintier, and Jill Poole

Course-focused and comprehensive, Poole’s Textbook on Contract Law provides an accessible overview of the key areas on the law curriculum. Contracts are legally enforceable agreements intended for planned exchanges that are regulated by the principles of contract law. This chapter looks at some of the main theories underpinning the development of English contract law and examines the nature of contractual liability. Contractual obligations arise largely from party agreement and this distinguishes contractual liability from liability in tort. Given the continued relevance of English law in a globalized world (in spite of the UK exiting the European Union), this chapter also briefly introduces the various attempts to produce a set of harmonized principles such as the Common European Sales Law, along with the impact of other international developments including the growth in e-commerce and electronic communications. Moreover, the chapter analyses the most significant European directives and their effect on the development of English contract law, especially in the context of consumer contracts. The implementation of these European directives has resulted in the introduction of the concept of ‘good faith’ into English contract law. Given the increasing importance of good faith as a concept, especially when in the context of ‘a relational contract’, the chapter gives detailed discussion on the scope of and application of good faith in performance of the contract. Finally, the chapter considers the implementation of the Consumer Rights Directive in a number of statutory instruments and the Consumer Rights Act 2015.

Chapter

Cover Poole's Textbook on Contract Law

1. Introduction to the law of contract  

Robert Merkin KC, Séverine Saintier, and Jill Poole

Course-focused and comprehensive, Poole’s Textbook on Contract Law provides an accessible overview of the key areas of the law curriculum. Contracts are legally enforceable agreements intended for planned exchanges that are regulated by the principles of contract law. This chapter looks at some of the main theories underpinning the development of English contract law and examines the nature of contractual liability. Contractual obligations arise largely from party agreement, and this distinguishes contractual liability from liability in tort. Given the continued relevance of English law in a globalized world (in spite of the UK exiting the European Union), this chapter also briefly introduces the various attempts to produce a set of harmonized principles such as the Common European Sales Law, along with the impact of other international developments including the growth in e-commerce and electronic communications. Moreover, the chapter analyses the most significant European directives and their effect on the development of English contract law, especially in the context of consumer contracts. The implementation of these European directives has resulted in the introduction of the concept of ‘good faith’ into English contract law. Given the increasing importance of good faith as a concept, especially in the context of ‘a relational contract’, the chapter gives detailed discussion on the scope of and application of good faith in performance of the contract. Finally, the chapter considers the implementation of the Consumer Rights Directive in a number of statutory instruments and the Consumer Rights Act 2015.

Chapter

Cover O'Sullivan & Hilliard's The Law of Contract

6. Privity  

Titles in the Core Text series take the reader straight to the heart of the subject, providing focused, concise, and reliable guides for students at all levels. This chapter examines the doctrine of privity in the law of contract. The doctrine of privity dictates that a person who is not a party to the contract cannot be granted contractual rights by the contract or be placed under contractual obligations by it. It explores the rationale of the principle, discusses the authorities that established it, and explores the various common law exceptions to the rule that a third party cannot acquire rights under a contract. This chapter also explores in detail the statutory exception to privity provided in the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999.

Chapter

Cover Cheshire, Fifoot, and Furmston's Law of Contract

2. Some Factors Affecting Modern Contract Law  

M P Furmston

This chapter discusses factors affecting contract law which will be met in the rest of this book. It can usefully be read both at the beginning and the end of the book. These include continental influence in the nineteenth century; the influence of economic theory; inequality of bargaining power; the use of standard form contracts; consumer protection; the relationship between standard form contracts, inequality of bargaining power, and consumer protection; contractual behaviour; the interrelationship of contract and tort; good faith in contract law; the globalization of contract law; and the Human Rights Act 1998.

Chapter

Cover Poole's Textbook on Contract Law

5. Content of the contract and principles of interpretation  

Robert Merkin, Séverine Saintier, and Jill Poole

Course-focused and comprehensive, Poole’s Textbook on Contract Law provides an accessible overview of the key areas on the law curriculum. This chapter explores how the terms of the parties’ agreement (that is, the contractual promise to be performed) are identified and how the courts interpret the meaning of those terms. It considers the status of statements made prior to the conclusion of the contract (as terms or representations) and why this matters. The parol evidence rule applies where the contract is written and provides that the writing represents the entire contract. This definition is flawed, however, because it allows the rule to be sidestepped by defining the contract as partly written and partly oral. Alternatively, an oral term can take effect as a collateral contract, which is separate to any written contract to which the parol evidence rule applies. The effect of the parol evidence rules can be achieved by incorporating an entire agreement clause. This chapter also considers the effect and impact of a no oral modification clause (or NOM). This chapter examines methods of achieving incorporation of terms such as signature, reasonable notice (or a higher standard of notice if the term is onerous or unusual), consistent course of dealing and common knowledge of the parties. In addition to the express terms, there may be terms implied by custom, by courts or by statute. Finally, the chapter considers the principles on which contracts are interpreted including the relevance, or otherwise, of pre-contractual negotiations.

Chapter

Cover Poole's Textbook on Contract Law

5. Content of the contract and principles of interpretation  

Robert Merkin KC, Séverine Saintier, and Jill Poole

Course-focused and comprehensive, Poole’s Textbook on Contract Law provides an accessible overview of the key areas of the law curriculum. This chapter explores how the terms of the parties’ agreement (that is, the contractual promise to be performed) are identified and how the courts interpret the meaning of those terms. It considers the status of statements made prior to the conclusion of the contract (as terms or representations) and why this matters. The parol evidence rule applies where the contract is written and provides that the writing represents the entire contract. This definition is flawed, however, because it allows the rule to be sidestepped by defining the contract as partly written and partly oral. Alternatively, an oral term can take effect as a collateral contract, which is separate to any written contract to which the parol evidence rule applies. The effect of the parol evidence rules can be achieved by incorporating an entire agreement clause. This chapter also considers the effect and impact of a no oral modification clause (or NOM). This chapter examines methods of achieving incorporation of terms such as signature, reasonable notice (or a higher standard of notice if the term is onerous or unusual), consistent course of dealing and common knowledge of the parties. In addition to the express terms, there may be terms implied by custom, by courts or by statute. Finally, the chapter considers the principles on which contracts are interpreted including the relevance, or otherwise, of pre-contractual negotiations.