LAW1101 Introduction To Law

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LAW1101 Introduction To Law

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LAW1101 Introduction To Law

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Course Code: LAW1101
University: University Of Southern Queensland

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Country: Australia


1. Explain what is meant by the term ‘medium neutral citation’. Which case citation should be used if the case is subsequently reported in the law reports?
2. Which case established the definition of a unilateral contract and what was held in that case?    

The Supreme Court of Victoria had heard this case. 
The name of the judge who decided this case was Dodd Streeton J.
The full text judgment on this case is present on the electronic databases. Similarly it can also be found on the website of the court, using a format known as the media neutral citation. Regarding the citation, no volume number is present and the abrogation of the court has been used in place of the abrogation of the law report. 
The issue present before the court. This case was related with a unilateral contract. For this purpose, a unilateral contract is a contract in which the party that has made the offer, invites the acceptance of the offer through actual performance in place of a promise made by the other party. An example of a unilateral contract is the case where one party has offered a prize for any person who returns a lost dog. 
Carlill v Carbolic (1892) is the leading case related with a unilateral contract. In this case, the court provided the definition of a unilateral contract.
In case of Australia, in R v Clarke (1927), the definition of a unilateral contract was provided by a court in Australia.
In this case, Dodds-Stretton J, stated that the witnesses and the evidence that was produced before the court by Mr. Blancato was considered to be more reliable, coherent and his statement was more detailed. The court stated that the address was very common and he had accepted that only chance was provided by the BISG dealers to purchase the machinery at a cost of one dollar as the same was not sold directly by Canon, there were certain models that do not a part of this offer like the high end models and the black-and-white and color copiers. In the statement, it was further mentioned that the condition was applicable only on the condition of the rental agreement or when the customer did not need the machinery, whichever was late. However, the judge was of the opinion that the witnesses and evidence that was produced by Mr. Jensen was not consistent and therefore it was not treated by the court as being dependable. 
The court arrived at the conclusion in this case that there was no basis for providing any declaratory or injunctive relief. The reason was that the plaintiff had not been successful in establishing that a unilateral contract was present and recognized its customer entry under the rental agreement and as a result, the court dismissed the claim initiated by the plaintiff.
On the basis of the claim, that was introduced by the plaintiff, the knowledge the offer by making the first customers enter into a rental agreement with CFA. Therefore, they were considered to be eligible to purchase the Canon copiers present in the dealer area only for one dollar. At the same time, the plaintiff also claimed that they were eligible to purchase all the concerned machinery for which they had secured customers in the dealership after the rental agreement was completed. It was further submitted that according to the original offer, they were able to purchase the machinery for one dollar as an implied term was present in the original offer. With provided that even if the agreement is five of the expiry date of the machinery. After the dealership had expired, the defendant was not ready to sell this equipment. Hence it was claimed that a breach of contract has taken place on part of CFA. 
The agreement created by the plaintiff had failed as a result of the fact that they were not able to establish the presence of a unilateral contract of the nature that was mentioned in Carlill v Carbolic Smoke Ball Co. In this case, the claim brought by the tradition was not based on the grounds of identity theory as was done in Vroon BV vs. Foster’s Brewing (1994) but for wholeness. Therefore, in the opinion of the Court, none of these classes applied in the present case. The judge was of the opinion that proper evidence was not present in this case to support the allegations that have been made by the plaintiff, according to which an offer for certain promise was made in accordance with legal vocabulary. The same way, it was easy to determine what was said in the letters that were exchanged between the parties during the trial. Similarly, the communications and the conduct of the parties, after the conference, did not establish that they had acted according to the terms of the agreement. Hence in view of all these reasons, the claim initiated by the plaintiff had failed. 
The citation for the appeal will be Mildura Office Equipment & Supplies Pty Ltd v Canon Finance Australia Ltd [2006] VSC 42.
It was dismissed on the grounds that the evidence produced by Mr. Jensen was not consistent but it was sketchy and shifting. In this evidence, proper details were not present, while the evidence produced by Mr. Blancto was considered by the court to be reliable and well and coherent. 
According to one of the trial judges, Kellam JA, it was stated that the plaintiff’s presentation was nearly comical skit and therefore it cannot be treated as sufficient. The presentation did not have the details related with the identification of the machinery and its usage. It was further stated that the plaintiff had failed to give clear and proper details related with the date of conference, as well as the number of customers who had entered the agreement and regarding all other dealings that were present regarding the acceptance and termination of the agreement. Therefore, the judge stated that in her opinion, it was not distinct from his offer that was needed for establishing the contract. It was further stated that the plaintiff could not set up the presence of a unilateral contract, of the class. That was present in Carlill v Carbolic.
After discussing the judgment, it can be said that the case was decided fairly. The court arrived at the conclusion that the plaintiff’s evidence was inconsistent and unreliable. Moreover, the court also arrived at the conclusion that a unilateral contract was not present in this case, as was claimed by the plaintiff. The plaintiff’s case was only based on the contract, but there were many difficulties present in establishing this claim. No information had been provided by the plaintiff concerning the machinery or equipment.  
ADR Processes
Alternative dispute resolution provides a way to resolve the disputes of the parties without going to court. Generally, the ADR processes include negotiations between the parties. But in some cases, the process may be facilitated by a neutral third party. The ADR processes provide a way to which the parties can solve their problems by themselves, without recourse to legal action. In case of ADR processes, direct, unassisted negotiations involve between the parties or the negotiations among their lawyers (Spencer, 2006). Other methods of arbitration include mediation, conciliation, expert appraisal, expert determination and arbitration. However, in all these processes, a common feature is that the parties have complete control over the process and also on the outcome of this process. Consequently, when ADR processes involved, the parties intended to find their needs and interests (Warren, 2010). Similarly, they can explore the different ways in which the solution to the dispute can be found, which fulfills all their needs. Even if the parties could have different interests and needs, there are many cases when the parties can set is buying all these needs without making a compromise (King, Freiberg, Batagol and Hyams, 2009).
A number of advantages are available when the parties have decided to use the alternative dispute resolution processes. The disputes of the parties can be very considerable and disturbing for them, however. The parties can resolve these disputes in some other way and without recourse to the adversarial system or going to the courts. Similarly, in case of some disputes, a legal solution may not be suitable for the parties (French, 2007). There are some other cases where taking the legal action could result in worsening the situation. Therefore in such cases, the alternative dispute resolution processes provide significant advantages in comparison with the adversarial system (Sander and Goldberg, 1994).
Generally, it has been seen that the ADR processes are less costly, and they are also faster than the court processes. When ADR processes are used by the parties, they can explain the case in their own words. Similarly, these processes are flexible and informal. The ADR processes have the flexibility to respond to the individual needs of the parties. As the parties to the dispute are deeply involved in the ADR processes, there is a superior commitment on part of the parties and the result is that the chances to comply with the result also increase in case of these processes. The ADR processes are also confidential in nature. Similarly, these processes are more likely to maintain the goodwill between the parties (Downes, 2008). At least, in case of ADR processes, it can be expected that the dispute between the parties will not be escalated that is very necessary particularly when the parties have continuous relationship (Preston, 2008). 
In comparison, the legal system was used for resolving disputes between the parties. Under the legal system, the necessary structure that is needed for resolving several disputes has been provided. In some cases, the parties failed to arrive at an agreement through the collaborative processes. Similarly there are certain disputes in which the coercive power of the state may be necessary for enforcing the solution, regardless of the way through which the solution was achieved (Kinchin, 2007). Similarly, it is worth mentioning that there are several cases where the parties may look for help resolve the dispute. This has been particularly seen when the dispute involves perceived legal rights or a threat of legal action. Hence, the parties may want advice regarding the way in which they can deal with the situation (Parry, 2008). 
In the end, the ADR processes certainly act as an alternative to the adversary system. There are many instances where the ADR processes were used with considerable success to deal with the cases that have been brought before the courts. However, the ADR processes can even resolve a dispute before it has entered into the legal system. On these grounds, it can be said that as compared to the adversarial system, the ADR processes provide an effective method to resolve disputes.
In the present case, the offer made by Penny was rejected by Bestian when he tried to purchase the textbook for $60. Therefore, later on, when Bastian wants to purchase the book from Penny at the price mentioned in the advertisement, the book was already sold. In this case, no contract had been created between Bastian and Penny.
The principles of contract law that can be applied in the present case are:-
An advertisement is not an offer, but it is only an invitation to treat.
The promise to keep the offer open should be supported by some consideration; and
when a counter offer has been made, it is no longer available to except the original offer later.
Therefore in the present case, there is no contract between Bastian and Penny 
(B) Can the service provider sue Peter or his parents? Provide case law in your answer
Issue: The issue in this case is related with the fact if a lawful contract is created between Peter and the service provider.
Rule: According to the law of contract, there are certain elements that should be present in an agreement so that it can be said that the agreement is legally enforceable or in other words, it is a valid contract. Therefore, offer, acceptance, consideration and intention should be present on part of the bodies were going to form a valid contract. Apart from these requirements, it is also required that the parties should have the legal capacity to form a valid contract. The law of contract provides that there are certain parties who do not have the capacity to enter into a contract. For instance, persons of unsound mind and minors are not allowed by the law to form a valid contract. A minor can be described as a person who is not attained the age of majority according to the law of the land. The incapacity of a minor to create a valid contract is regulated by the common law. Therefore the general rule provides that a contract that has been created by a minor with an adult is not enforceable against the minor even if the contract can be imposed against the adult person. On the other hand, if after achieving the age of majority, the minor ratifies the contract through an act which confirms the promise, the person will be bound by the promise made when he was a minor.
Application: Therefore in the present case, Peter had entered into the contract with the service provider. But at the time, Peter was only 14 years old. As a result, the contract, created by Peter is not enforceable against Peter or his parents, Bastian and Mary.
Regarding the second issue, if the service provider can sue Peter or his parents, it needs to be mentioned that a contract created by a minor is not enforceable against the minor. The leading case in this regard is that of Nash v Inman (1908). In this case, Nash was a tailor who had entered into a contract with another graduate student, Inman. According to this contract, Nash was going to provide 11 fancy waistcoats to Inman, who already had sufficient supply of clothes provided by his father. Therefore, when Nash tried to blame the cost of these clothes, Inman wanted to rely on lack of capacity. The court stated that, as is the case with the lunatic, a minor is also not capable of making a contract of purchase. However, if the needs of the infant or the lunatic are satisfied by a person by supplying necessaries to him, it will be implied by the law that there is an obligation to repay such person and it can be enforced against the estate of the infant or the lunatic.
Conclusion: In the present case, the Internet service cannot be treated as necessities of life for Peter and as a result, this contract cannot be imposed by the service provider against Peter or his parents 
Downes G, (2008) “Alternative Dispute Resolution at the AAT” 15 AJ Admin L137
French B, (2007) “Dispute Resolution in Australia – The Movement from Litigation to Mediation” 18 ADRJ 213
Kinchin N, (2007) “Mediation and administrative meritsreview: An impossible goal?” 18 ADRJ227
King M, Freiberg A, Batagol B and Hyams R, (2009) Non-Adversarial Justice (Federation Press) p 88.
Parry D, (2008) “Revolution in the West: The Transformation of Planning Appeals in Western Australia” 14 LGLJ 119
Preston BJ, (2008) “The Land and Environment Court of New South Wales: Moving towards a multi-door courthouse – Part II” 19 ADRJ 144
Sander FEA and Goldberg SB, (1994) “Fitting the Forum to the Fuss: A User-Friendly Guide to Selecting an ADR Procedure” 10 Negotiation Journal 49
Spencer D, (2006) “Judicial mediators: is the time right? – Part I” 17 ADRJ 130
Warren M, (2010) “Should Judges be Mediators?” 21 ADRJ 77 
Case Law
Carlill v Carbolic Smoke Ball Company [1892] EWCA Civ 1
Mildura Office Equipment & Supplies Pty Ltd v Canon Finance Australia Ltd [2006] VSC 42
Nash v Inman [1908] 2 KB 1
R v Clarke (1927) 40 CLR 227
Vroon BV v Fosters Brewing Group Ltd [1994] 2 VR 32

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