What is contract law?

by Clayton Crowley
in Blog
on 17 June 2014
Hits: 5104

Qualified Contract Law Attorneys, Experts in Albuquerque
Crowley & Gribble P.C.

An agreement creating obligations enforceable by law. The basic elements of a contract are mutual
assent, consideration, capacity, and legality.
In some states, the element of consideration can be satisfied by a valid

Possible remedies for breach
of contract include general damages, consequential damages, reliance damages,
and specific performance.

Contracts are promises that the law will enforce. The law
provides remedies if a promise is breached or recognizes the performance of a
promise as a duty. Contracts arise when a duty does or may come into existence,
because of a promise made by one of the parties. To be legally binding as a
contract, a promise must be exchanged for adequate consideration. Adequate
consideration is a benefit or detriment which a party receives which reasonably
and fairly induces them to make the promise/contract. For example, promises
that are purely gifts are not considered enforceable because the personal
satisfaction the grantor of the promise may receive from the act of giving is
normally not considered adequate consideration. Certain promises that are not
considered contracts may, in limited circumstances, be enforced if one party
has relied to his detriment on the assurances of the other party.

Contracts are mainly governed by state statutory and common
(judge-made) law and private law. Private law principally includes the terms of
the agreement between the parties who are exchanging promises. This private law
may override many of the rules otherwise established by state law. Statutory
law may require some contracts be put in writing and executed with particular
formalities. Otherwise, the parties may enter into a binding agreement without
signing a formal written document. Most of the principles of the common law of
contracts are outlined in the Restatement of the Law Second, Contracts,
published by the American Law Institute. The Uniform Commercial Code, whose
original articles have been adopted in nearly every state, represents a body of
statutory law that governs important categories of contracts. The main articles
that deal with the law of contracts are Article 1 (General Provisions) and
Article 2 (Sales). Sections of Article 9 (Secured Transactions) govern
contracts assigning the rights to payment in security interest agreements.
Contracts related to particular activities or business sectors may be highly
regulated by state and/or federal law. See Law Relating To Other Topics Dealing
with Particular Activities or Business Sectors.

In 1988, the United States joined the United Nations
Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods which now governs
contracts within its scope.

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