Dickinson v. Dodds
- D signed and delivered a memo to P that said that he agreed to sell some property to P for 800 pounds. The offer was to be good until Friday at 9 A.M.
- D sold the property to a third party.
- P heard that D was selling the property to someone else, so he went to D's current residence and left his acceptance of the offer with D's mother in law. She failed to ever give D the acceptance.
- The next morning (Friday), P found D and gave him the acceptance before 9 A.M. D replied that it was too late; the property had already been sold.
- P sued D for performance and damages.
- Lower court found for P, contract enforceable.
- Court of Appeal reversed, found for D, no contract formed.
- If there is an open offer that has not yet been accepted by the offeree, is the offeror barred from making offers to other parties and is there a binding contract?
- When there is an open offer that has not yet been accepted by the offeree, there is no binding contract, and the offeror is able to make the same offer to other parties.
- An offer to sell real property is revoked when the offeree learns facts inconsistent with the continued existence of the offer.
- The document was nothing but an offer; unless both parties had agreed, there was no concluded agreement made. It was only an offer to sell.
- The promise was not binding; at any time before a complete acceptance by P, D was free to do whatever he wanted.
- There is no principle that says that there must be an express withdrawal of the offer.
- To constitute a contract, it must appear that the two minds were at one, at the same moment in time. P knew D no longer wanted to sell him the property.
- From the prof, "One of the worst decisions ever!"
- Very heavy formalism, did not look at reliance.