The typical starting place is offer and acceptance.1 An offer is regarded as a definite promise which by its terms and conditions provides the responding party with an option to either accept or decline the offer.2 Only after a court disposed of the matter is satisfied that offer and acceptance exist it will then look for consideration. Lush LJ described consideration as:In the context of this definition of consideration, Scant Securities via Helen suffered a detriment by virtue of the cost incurred and time lost in driving to the auction. Therefore, it is reasonable to conclude that there was indeed a consideration.The communication from Eric Tylfot Sons to Scant constituted an offer for the auction of commercial vehicles and vans that were of interest to Scant. It is assumed that the communication contained a specific date and time for the conduct of the auction. On the facts provided the communication provided a specific invitation to Scant to attend the auction. There is no doubt that Eric Tylfot Sons extended a specific and unambiguous offer to Scant. The only question is whether or not Scant accepted that offer.For an offer to be legally accepted the offer must follow the essential terms of the offer made.4 An offer can be accepted either by conduct or by written or oral communication.5 For present purposes, conduct since the acceptance of an offer is required to be communicated to the party making the offer.6 Scant did, however, via Helen’s email confirm acceptance of Tylfot’s offer to participate in the auction. Helen stated that she would be attending the auction. While she asked for confirmation that the auction was going to indeed take place she did not indicate that her acceptance of the offer was conditional upon a specific reply.
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