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How to Avoid Entering the "Oops" Agreement

How to Avoid Entering the "Oops" Agreement

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Published by Erin McClarty
Tips to avoid accidentally entering into a contract.
Tips to avoid accidentally entering into a contract.

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Categories:Types, Business/Law
Published by: Erin McClarty on May 02, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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How To Avoid Entering the "Oops" Agreement
It plagues men and women of all shapes and sizes. It can knock you off your feet before you know what hityou...cause weeks of headaches.It's the "Oops" Agreement, or at least that's what I call it.The "Oops" Agreement is that contract you enter into without knowing it. How do you enter a contract withoutknowing it? Glad you asked. It happens alot more than you think it does (there are actually two real-lifeexampleshere
) and the largest reason for that is the misunderstanding people generally have about contracts.The misnomer is that in order to have a contract one must pen "here-to-there-fore-after's" on a scroll and have itceremoniously signed. That makes for great television, but is far from the truth.In order to have a legally binding contract you really only need three things:1.An offer;2.
Acceptance of that offer;3.Andconsiderationexchanged between the parties. No special ceremonies, no magic words. And emails have further complicated things with the traditional"signature" not being required under the electronic signature statutes in many states.How might all of this play out in real life? Say I work for X organization and am trying to negotiate the purchaseof six laptops. I say:
: Henry, I would
buy them, but only if I could get them for $525 each.
: Were you still trying to have them shipped to you all by the 15th of March.
: I am.
: Ok, I can do that.Though many people might see this email exchange as a preliminary understanding, most states would find it tobe a valid contract. I made the
of purchasing the 6 laptops for $525, delivered to the business by March

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