STATUTE OF FRAUDS

STATUTE OF FRAUDS - STATUTE OF FRAUDS Historical Background...

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STATUTE OF FRAUDS
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Historical Background Originally oral contracts would not be enforced by courts Later, as began to allow, problem of perjury Solution- 1677 - Act for the Prevention of Fraud and Perjuries (Fraud is really the fraud on the court) Listed types of contracts which could not be proved by oral (parol) evidence Therefore, if contract is type on list, may be unenforceable if not in writing Became part of American legal system
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Background (cont.) New York - found in various statutes, primarily GOL §§ 5-702, 5-703 and UCC § 2-201 Note Not illegal to form oral contract. Statute says “void.” Read as “unenforceable.” Nothing wrong with performing oral contract Not a basis for rescission of executed contract Defense only if contract still executory
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Background (cont.) Affirmative defense Does not effect whether contract has been formed or has been breached Potentially harsh results - narrow judicial interpretation
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Categories Real property One year Suretyship (guarantee) Sales of goods for price of $500 or more
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Terminology “within” - contract is of type on “list” “not within” (or without) - contract is not type on list “satisfy the Statute” - if contract is within the Statute of Frauds, the contract will be uneforceable unless there is the type of evidence, other than parol (oral) testimony, required by the Statute (if other party raises defense) because the claimant will not be allowed to offer parol evidence Inquiry then is 1) Is contract “within” the Statute? 2) If so, has Statute been satisfied?
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Satisfying the Statute One way Statute can always be satisfied (GOL § 5-701) Contract (“it”) Is in writing Signed (“subscribed’) By the party to be charged Will come to other ways Note - In a real lawsuit, satisfying statute doesn’t mean plaintiff automatically prevails - still has to prove terms of contract and breach
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Real Property Provision NY GOL § 5-703 Within: Any contract that creates or transfers an interest in real property E.g., sale, lease, mortgage Except lease for a term of one year or less Doesn’t matter when parties enter into contract; issue is length of time tenant is entitled to occupy property
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Real Property Provision (cont.) Typical real property sale scenario 1. Contract formed S promises to sell, B promises to buy
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This note was uploaded on 12/13/2010 for the course LAW 1101 taught by Professor Reed during the Spring '08 term at CUNY Baruch.

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STATUTE OF FRAUDS - STATUTE OF FRAUDS Historical Background...

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