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(p. 168) 8. Contractual impossibility and risk: frustration and common mistake 

(p. 168) 8. Contractual impossibility and risk: frustration and common mistake
(p. 168) 8. Contractual impossibility and risk: frustration and common mistake

Jill Poole

, James Devenney

, and Adam Shaw-Mellors

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD LAW TROVE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Law Trove for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 23 February 2020

Each Concentrate revision guide is packed with essential information, key cases, revision tips, exam Q&As, and more. Concentrates show you what to expect in a law exam, what examiners are looking for, and how to achieve extra marks. This chapter examines the law’s response to events that render performance of the contract impossible for reasons beyond the control of the contracting parties, and so provide an excuse for non-performance. The default legal doctrines—common mistake (initial impossibility) and frustration (subsequent impossibility)—may come into play in instances of impossibility of performance only where there is no express or implied allocation of the risk of the event in the contract. These default doctrines determine what is to happen to the existing and future obligations of the parties.

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