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Contract | Formation

Acceptance: Communication

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Acceptance: Communication

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  • general rule: acceptance must be communicated (Entores v Miles Far East Corp. [1955])
  • exception: unilateral contract to public / worded to waive communication (Carlill v Carbolic Smoke Ball Co. [1893])


  • offeror may stipulate / offeree must comply or use equally effective method
  • by return of post / equally expeditious / eg telegram or verbal (Tinn v Hoffman & Co. (1873))
  • equally effective / not suffice / if offeror made clear particular method required
  • specific: by registered or recorded delivery post (Yates Building Co. v RJ Pulleyn & Son (1975))

Third party

  • only authorised / head teacher (Powell v Lee (1908))


  • general rule: silence & mere inactivity not constitute acceptance / onus on offeree communicate accept not reject
  • horse / criticised: nephew willing / not overruled (Felthouse v Bindley [1862])
  • Gibson LJ obiter: exceptional circumstance / offeree taken as accepted (Re Selectmove [1995])
bits of law
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