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Английский язык для юристов. Предпринимательское право

   Настоящее учебное пособие предназначено для овладения лексикой в области предпринимательского и коммерческого права студентами лингвистических вузов и студентами гражданско-правовой специализации юридических вузов.
   Книга призвана дать преподавателям и студентам специальный языковой и профессиональный материал, ориентированный на повышение качества профессиональной подготовки в области правовой лингвистики и международного бизнеса.


Е.Г. Анисимова, С. В. Коростелёв Английский язык для юристов Предпринимательское право

Предисловие

   Настоящее учебное пособие предназначено для овладения юридической терминологией в области предпринимательского права студентами гражданско-правовой специализации юридических вузов и студентами лингвистических вузов, изучающими юридическую лексику.
   Особенностью данного пособия является обеспечение решения двуединой задачи обеспечения учебного процесса как студентов-лингвистов, так и студентов-юристов.
   Во-первых, известно, что работа на международном рынке требует от юриста чрезвычайно высокого уровня подготовки. Данное пособие построено на использовании современных аутентичных иностранных юридических текстов государств системы общего права, и поэтому, оно может оказаться полезным для развития у студентов-юристов навыков сравнительно-правового толкования, дающего представление о том, как решаются сходные проблемы в государствах с различными правовыми системами.
   Работая с данным пособием, студент сможет использовать свои знания, полученные в ходе изучения дисциплин гражданско-правового цикла, осуществляя внешнее синхронное микро– и макросравнение институтов права государств с рыночной системой хозяйствования на уровне материальных правовых норм. Полученные в ходе работы навыки функционального сравнения студент может применить при поиске метода (правовой нормы или института) с помощью которых может быть решена возникающая в сфере международного бизнеса проблема.
   Во-вторых, пособие построено следующим образом: каждая дидактическая единица посвящена изучению норм одного из институтов предпринимательского права. В начало такой единицы помещен краткий комментарий, который отсылает обучаемого к нормам регулирующим сходный институт российского законодательства. Студент-лингвист перед началом работы над материалами дидактической единицы должен обратиться к указанным нормам, что поможет ему понять ее содержание и успешно овладеть лексикой данного института права. В ходе работы студентам-лингвистам, не знакомым с гражданским правом, рекомендуется обращаться к Гражданскому Кодексу Российской Федерации (предпочтительнее иметь под рукой любую из находящихся на рынке версий «Комментария к Гражданскому кодексу РФ»).
   Правовая лексика вводится тематически, по разделам, отражающим нормы отдельных институтов предпринимательского права; и закрепляется в различных видах упражнений, находящих свое применение в таких речевых видах работы: монолог, диалог, дискуссия. Однако следует отметить, что структура пособия не является зеркальным и полным отражением структуры отрасли российского предпринимательского и коммерческого права. Авторами выбраны те институты права, которые представляются как наиболее полезные и интересные для достижения цели освоения студентами предпринимательской лексики.
   Пособие не предусматривает обучение грамматике, поскольку его введение в учебный процесс предусматривается на старших курсах вузов, когда студентами уже освоены базовые курсы английского языка, гражданского права, и осуществляется изучение специальных дисциплин, входящих в гражданско-правовую специализацию подготовки юристов, а именно: предпринимательского и коммерческого права, страхования ит.д.
   Студентам как юридического, так и лингвистического направлений подготовки при работе с данным пособием рекомендуется использовать наряду с общими словарями также и специальные словари, а именно: Андрианов С. Н., Бернсон А. С., Никифоров А. С. Англо-русский юридический словарь. М.: Русский язык, 1993, либо более поздние издания; Кузнецов А. Практический русско-английский юридический словарь. М.: Avers, 1995; электронные словари MULTILEX, LINGVO; онлайновый словари MULTITRAN (www.multitran.ru), Find Law for Legal Professionals (www.dictionary.lp.findlaw.com).

Unit 1
Tort Law
Деликтное право

   Нормы института внедоговорных обязательств: «Обязательства вследствие причинения вреда» (глава 59 ГК РФ) определяют, что вред, причиненный личности или имуществу гражданина или юридического лица, подлежит возмещению в полном объеме лицом, причинившим вред. Устанавливаются ограничения по возмещению вреда причиненного несовершеннолетними и недееспособными гражданами. Возмещение вреда осуществляется либо в денежной, либо в натуральной форме. Законом, либо договором может быть установлена обязанность причинителя вреда выплатить потерпевшим компенсацию сверх возмещения вреда. Лицо, причинившее вред, освобождается от возмещения, если докажет, что вред причинен не по его вине. В возмещении вреда может быть отказано, если вред причинен по просьбе или с согласия потерпевшего, в состоянии необходимой обороны, в состоянии крайней необходимости, а действия причинителя не нарушают нравственные принципы общества.
List of key terms and word combinations:
   – actual malice – злой умысел, установленный по фактическим обстоятельствам дела
   – comparative negligence – относительная небрежность совместная вина
   – contributory negligence – небрежность (неосторожность) истца, вызвавшая несчастный случай; вина потерпевшего; небрежность, предполагающая возмещение доли ответственности
   – damage cap – предел возмещения
   – damages – возмещение вреда
   – defamation – разглашение правдивых сведений позорящих другое лицо
   – defective condition – юридически порочные условия
   – false imprisonment – неправомерное лишение свободы
   – infliction of emotional distress – причинение эмоционального расстройства
   – injunction – судебный запрет
   – interference with a contract – вмешательство в контракт
   – invasion of privacy – нарушение личной жизни
   – legal duty – правовая обязанность, договорная обязанность
   – libel – клевета письменно или через печать
   – misuse of legal procedure – злоупотребление судопроизводством
   – negligence – небрежность
   – nuisance – нарушение покоя, вред, источник вреда, «зловредность» (в частности, причинение собственнику недвижимости помех и неудобств в пользовании ею)
   – proximate cause – непосредственная причина
   – punitive damages – штрафные убытки, убытки, присуждаемые в порядке наказания
   – doctrine respondeat superior– доктрина «пусть принципал отвечает»
   – slander – устная клевета
   – strict liability – строгая ответственность; объективная ответственность (независимо от наличия вины)
   – survival statute – закон о признании основания иска действительным независимо от смерти стороны
   – tort – деликт, гражданское правонарушение
   – tortfeasor – причинитель вреда, делинквент; правонарушитель
   A tort is a private wrong that injures another person's physical well-being, property, or reputation. A person who commits a tort is called a tortfeasor. The other party is alternately referred to as the injured party, the innocent party, or the victim. If a lawsuit has been filed, the injured party is called the plaintiff and the tortfeasor is called the defendant.
   The primary purpose of tort law is to compensate the innocent party by making up for any loss suffered by that victim. Another objective is to protect potential victims by deterring future tortious behavior. Criminal law involves a public wrong, that is, a wrong that affects the entire society. When a crime is committed, government authorities begin legal actions designed to remove the offender from society. It is possible, however, for a single act to be both a tort and a crime.
   Businesspeople must be especially aware of tort law because of the doctrine of respondeat superior (let the master respond). That doctrine may impose legal liability on employers and make them pay for the torts committed by their employees within the scope of the employer's business.
   No legal liability can be imposed against an individual unless two elements are present: the first element is duty, which is an obligation placed on individuals because of the law; the second element is a violation of that duty. A duty can be violated intentionally, through negligence, or under the theory of strict liability.
   Legal duties arise corresponding to each right within each member of our society.
   Intentional violations of duty include a variety of intentional torts, all of which have their own individual elements. The principal intentional torts are assault, battery, false imprisonment, defamation, invasion of privacy, misuse of legal procedure, infliction of emotional distress, nuisance, and interference with a contract.
   People and property are sometimes injured even when no one intends that the injury occur. Such an occurrence is usually labeled «an accident.» Justice demands that the injured party be compensated. That part of tort law that is concerned with the compensation of accident victims is called negligence.
   Under what circumstances can the actions of an alleged tortfeasor be labeled negligent so that the tortfeasor will be held liable? Four elements must be present to establish negligence: (1) legal duty, (2) breach of duty through a failure to meet the appropriate standard of care, (3) proximate cause, and (4) actual injury.
   A breach of duty owed to the victim occurs if the tortfeasor has not met the appropriate standard of care under the circumstances. To determine if the alleged tortfeasor has met the standard of care, the court uses the reasonable person test. This test compares the actions of the tortfeasor with those of a reasonable person in a similar situation. The reasonable person test is objective.
   Determining this test may require the use of expert witnesses to testify as to the reasonable professional's conduct under the circumstances.
   In order for the tortfeasor to be held liable, the unreasonable conduct must be the proximate cause of the victim's injuries. Proximate cause (sometimes referred to as legal cause) is the connection between the unreasonable conduct and the resulting harm.
   The injured party in a lawsuit for negligence must show that actual harm was suffered. In most cases, the harm suffered is a physical injury or in a form of property damage, and is, therefore, visible. Harm suffered due to fright or humiliation is difficult to demonstrate.
   Several defenses can be used by the defendant in a negligence case. These defenses include contributory negligence, comparative negligence, and assumption of the risk.
   The defense of contributory negligence involves the failure of the injured party to be careful enough to ensure personal safety. Contributory negligence completely prevents recovery by the injured party. The injured party's defense to a charge of contributory negligence is called last clear chance. Under this doctrine, a tortfeasor may be held liable if the injured party can show that the tortfeasor had the last chance to avoid injury.
   The doctrine of comparative negligence requires courts to weigh the relative degree of wrongdoing in awarding damages, and to assign damages according to the degree of fault of each party.
   Another defense to negligence is assumption of the risk, which involves the voluntary exposure of the victim to a known risk.
   Under the doctrine of strict liability or absolute liability, the court will hold a tortfeasor liable for injuries to a victim even though the tortfeasor did not intend the harm and was not, in any way, negligent. Strict liability is generally applied when the harm results from an ultrahazardous or very dangerous activity.
   Product liability is a legal theory that imposes liability on the manufacturer and seller of a product produced and sold in a defective condition (unreasonably dangerous to the user, to the consumer, or to property). Anyone who produces or sells a product in a defective condition is subject to liability for the physical or emotional injury to the ultimate consumer and for any physical harm to the user's property.
   When a wrongdoer has injured another person by committing a tort, the victim can usually be compensated with monetary damages. Damages can include compensation for the repair or replacement of involved property, or for lost wages, medical bills, and any pain and suffering that the victim was forced to endure. If the tortfeasor's acts are notoriously willful and malicious, a court may impose punitive damages (exemplary damages), which are damages above and beyond those needed to compensate the injured party. Punitive damages are designed to punish the tortfeasor so that similar malicious actions are avoided by others.
   If a tort involves a continuing problem the injured party may ask the court for an injunction. An injunction is a court order preventing someone from performing a particular act. If the company failed to satisfy an order, it would be in contempt of court. Contempt of court is a deliberate violation of the order of a judge that can result in a fine or in incarceration for the wrongdoer.

   Exercise 1. Comprehension questions: 1. What are the kinds of violation of a duty?
   2. What is done to determine if the alleged tortfeasor has met the standard of care?
   3. What are the forms of the actual harm?
   4. When do the courts deny damages in actions for negligence?
   5. When is the strict liability applied?
   6. What are the punitive damages designed for?
   7. Explain what an injunction is.

   Exercise 2. Find in the text English equivalents to the following:
   Относительная небрежность; совместная вина; небрежность, предполагающая возмещение доли ответственности; предел возмещения; разглашение правдивых сведений позорящих другое лицо; юридически порочные условия; судебный запрет; вмешательство в контракт; нарушение личной жизни; правовая обязанность; клевета письменно или через печать; небрежность; источник вреда; непосредственная причина; убытки, присуждаемые в порядке наказания; устная клевета; объективная ответственность.

   Exercise 3. Consult recommended dictionaries and give words or phrases to the following definitions:
   Обязательства из причинения вреда; моральный вред; меры ответственности; вред причиненный источником повышенной опасности; вред причиненный актами власти; вред причиненный несовершеннолетними лицами; вред причиненный недееспособными лицами; вред причиненный жизни и здоровью гражданина; право регресса; способы и размеры компенсации вреда.

   Exercise 4. Be ready to talk on one of the following topics:
   1. Differentiate between the objectives of tort law and those of criminal law.
   2. Discuss the element of duty and explain how duties relate to rights.
   3. Identify the principal intentional torts and outline the elements of each.
   4. Determine the four elements of negligence.
   5. Contrast contributory negligence, comparative negligence, and assumption of the risk.

   Exercise 5. Make up your own dialog on the case: To prove that the plaintiff died of lung cancer caused by smoking the defendant's cigarettes or that plaintiff's scalp rash was caused by the defendant hair dye will often be a tricky and difficult task. Not only must the plaintiff disclose that the breach of warranty was the cause «in fact», but he must show, that the «breach of the warranty was the proximate cause of the loss sustained.» The lawyer must prove a sufficiently close causal connection to convince the court that it ought to be defined as proximate.
   Post hoc propter hoc is not normally enough; the plaintiff must show more that the goods injured the plaintiff in a certain way.

Unit 2
Characteristics, and Status of Contracts
Сущность, характеристика и статус договоров

   Нормы общих положений гражданского права (раздел I ГК РФ, глава 9 «Сделки») и института обязательственного права (раздел III ГК РФ), а именно, нормы субинститута общих положений договора (главы 27, 28, 29 ГК РФ), определяют, что договор представляет собой соглашение двух или нескольких лиц об установлении, изменении или прекращении гражданских прав и обязанностей. Субъекты права свободны в определении условий, решении вопросов заключения договора и в выборе партнеров. Заключение договора проходит две стадии: 1) оферта (предложение заключить договор); 2) акцепт (согласие заключить договор). Договор может быть заключен в устной или письменной форме.
List of key terms and word combinations:
   – contract of record – договор, облеченный в публичный акт
   – executed contract – договор с исполнением в момент заключения
   – executory contract – договор с исполнением в будущем
   – express contract – явно выраженный договор
   – implied-in-fact contract – подразумеваемый договор
   – imlied-in-law contract – квази-договор (вытекающий из предписаний закона)
   – obligee – лицо, по отношению к которому принято обязательство; кредитор по обязательству
   – obligor – лицо, принявшее на себя обязательство; должник по обязательству, дебитор
   – privity – имущественные отношения (основанные на договоре, правопреемстве и других личных отношениях)
   – promisee – кредитор по договору
   – promisor – должник по договору
   – quasi-contract – квазидоговор
   – unenforceable contract – договор, не могущий быть принудительно осуществленным в исковом порядке
   – unilateral contract – односторонняя сделка
   – valid contract – надлежаще оформленный, надлежаще совершенный договор
   – voidable contract – оспоримая сделка
   – void contract – не имеющая юридической силы, ничтожная сделка
   A contract is an agreement based on mutual promises between two or more competent parties to do or to refrain from doing some particular thing that is neither illegal nor impossible. The agreement results in an obligation or a duty that can be enforced in a court of law.
   The contracting party who makes a promise is known as the promisor; the one to whom the promise is made is the promisee. The party who is obligated to deliver on a promise or to undertake some act is called the obligor. The contracting party to whom the obligor owes an obligation is called the obligee.
   A legally complete contract will arise between two parties when all six elements of a contract are present: offer, acceptance, mutual assent, capacity, consideration, and legality. If any one of the six elements is missing, the transaction is not a legally complete contract.
   1. An offer is a proposal made by one party to another indicating a willingness to enter into a contract. The person who makes an offer is called the offerer. The person to whom the offer is made is the offeree. Making the offer is actually the first step in creating the contractual relationship between the two parties. The offer must be seriously intended, clear and definite, and communicated to the offeree.
   2. In most cases, only the specifically identified offeree has the right to accept an offer. Acceptance means that the offeree agrees to be bound by the terms set up by the offerer in the offer. In many situations, if the offeree changes any of those terms, the acceptance is not really an acceptance but a counteroffer.
   3. If a valid offer has been made by the offerer and a valid acceptance has been made by the offeree, then the parties have agreed to the terms, and mutual assent exists between them. Mutual assent is sometimes called a meeting of the minds.
   4. Capacity is the legal ability to enter into a contractual relationship. The law has established a general presumption that anyone entering a contractual relationship has the legal capacity to do so.
   5. Consideration, i.e. the mutual exchange of benefits and sacrifices, is the thing of value promised to one party in exchange for something else of value promised by the other party. This exchange of valued items or services binds the parties together. If no consideration passes between the parties, then no contract exists.
   6. The final element of a binding contract is legality. Parties cannot be allowed to enforce a contract that involves doing something that is illegal. Some illegal contracts involve agreements to commit a crime or to perform a tort. Other activities that are neither crimes nor torts have been made illegal by specific statutes. Among these activities are usurious agreements, wagering agreements, unlicensed agreements, unconscionable agreements, etc.
   All contracts are agreements, but not all agreements are contracts. An agreement may or may not be legally enforceable. For example, an agreement to take a friend to a football game would not be legally enforceable because the friend has not given anything in exchange for that promise. To be enforceable, an agreement must conform to the law of contracts.
   The general rule of contract law is that the parties to a contract must stand in privity to one another. Privity means that both parties must have a legally recognized interest in the subject of the contract if they are to be bound by it. Outside parties who do not have such an interest in the subject matter of the contract may not be bound by it. Their right to sue in the event of breach (i.e., broken or violated) of contract would also be called into question. An exception to the general rule of privity exists in cases involving warranties and product liability.
   Contractual characteristics are divided into four different categories:
   • valid, void, voidable, and unenforceable;
   • unilateral and bilateral;
   • express and implied; and
   • informal and formal.
   Any given contract could be classifiable in all four ways. Thus, a single contract could be said to be valid, bilateral, express, and formal.
   A valid contract is one that is legally binding and fully enforceable by the court. In contrast, a void contract is one that has no legal effect whatsoever. A contract to perform an illegal act would be void. A voidable contract is one that may be avoided or canceled by one of the parties. A contract made by minors and one that is induced by fraud or misrepresentation are examples of voidable contracts. An unenforceable contract is one that, because of some rule of law, cannot be upheld by a court of law. An unenforceable contract may have all the elements of a complete contract and still be unenforceable.
   A unilateral contract is an agreement in which one party makes a promise to do something in return for an act of some sort. In contrast, a bilateral contract is one in which both parties make promises. A bilateral contract comes into existence the moment the two promises are made. A breach of contract occurs when one of the two parties fails to keep the promise.
   A contract can be either express or implied. An express contract requires some sort of written or spoken expression that indicates the desire of the parties to enter the contractual relationship. An implied contract is created by the actions or gestures of the parties involved in the transaction.
   In some situations, laws require certain types of contracts to be in writing. A written contract does not have to be a long, formal, preprinted agreement. A written contract may take the form of a letter, sales slip and receipt, notation, or memorandum. A written contract may be typed, printed, scrawled, or written in beautiful penmanship.
   One who knowingly accepts benefits from another person may be obligated for their payment, even though no express agreement has been made. Agreements of this type can be either implied in fact or implied in law.
   Contracts implied by the direct or indirect acts of the parties are known as implied-in-fact contracts.
   An implied-in-law contract can be imposed by a court applying reasons of justice and fairness when someone is unjustly enriched at the innocent expense of another. It is used when a contract cannot be enforced or when there is no actual written, oral, or implied-in-fact agreement. An implied-in-law contract is also called a quasi-contract. It does not result from the mutual assent of the parties such as an express or implied-in-fact contract.
   Under common law principles, a formal contract differs from other types in that it has to be written; signed, witnessed, and placed under the seal of the parties; and delivered.
   A special type of formal contract – contract of record – is not a contract in the true sense of the word because it is court created, and it does not have all the elements of a valid contract. Often, such a contract is one that has been confirmed by the court with an accompanying recorded judgment giving the successful litigant the right to demand satisfaction of the judgment.
   An oral or written contract that is not under a seal or is not a contract of record is considered an informal contract (also known as a simple contract). An informal contract generally has no requirements as to language, form, or construction. It comprises obligations entered into by parties whose promises are expressed in the simplest and, usually, most ordinary nonlegal language.
   After a contract has been negotiated, all obligations must then be satisfactorily performed in order for the contract to be executed. A contract that has not yet been fully performed by the parties is called an executory contract. When a contract's terms have been completely and satisfactorily carried out by both parties, the contract becomes an executed contract. Such a contract is no longer an active agreement and is valuable only if a dispute about the agreement occurs.

   Exercise 1. Comprehension questions:
   1. How are the two contracting parties called?
   2. What are the requirements of an offer?
   3. Can it be called an acceptance when the offeree changes the terms?
   4. What does the mutual assent suppose?
   5. In what cases do people have the right to abandon their contracts?
   6. What is a consideration and why is it an important element of a contract?
   7. What makes the contract illegal?
   8. Can quasi-contract be called a contract in the true sense of the word?
   9. What is the contract of record?

   Exercise 2. Find in the text English equivalents to the following:
   Явно выраженный договор; подразумеваемый договор; лицо, по отношению к которому принято обязательство; кредитор по обязательству; лицо, принявшее на себя обязательство; должник по обязательству, дебитор; кредитор по договору; должник по договору; договор, не могущий быть принудительно осуществленным в исковом порядке; оспоримая сделка; ничтожная сделка.

   Exercise 3. Consult recommended dictionaries and give words or phrases to the following definitions:
   Возмездный договор; безвозмездный договор; публичный договор; предварительный договор; договор в пользу третьего лица; толкование договора; простая письменная форма договора.

   Exercise 4. Be ready to talk on one of the following topics:
   1. Identify the six elements of a contract.
   2. Distinguish contracts from other agreements made between different parties.
   3. Explain the nature of valid, void, voidable, and unenforceable contracts.
   4. Contrast unilateral and bilateral contractual arrangements.
   5. Outline the difference between express and implied contracts.
   6. Contrast the nature of a formal contract with that of an informal contract.
   7. Explain how executory contracts differ from executed contracts.

   Exercise 5. Make up your own dialog on the case: In Kunian v. Development Corp. of America, the seller of plumbing and heating materials entered into an installment contract with the buyer. Several months later the buyer was ,000 behind in payments for installments of goods delivered. After the seller demanded assurance of performance from the buyer, the buyer promised that he would pay the outstanding indebtedness if the seller would continue his performance. When a month passed and the buyer had made no further payments, the seller informed the buyer that no further deliveries would be made unless the buyer deposited in escrow a sufficient amount of cash to pay for the delivered goods. The court held that the seller had «reasonable ground for insecurity» and that his suspension of performance was justified.

   Exercise 6. Resume in industry buzz:
   Types of Ks
   1. Express or Implied a. Express is statemts of mutual assent; willingness to enter into a K
   b. Implied is no statements; conduct
   2. Bilateral, Unilateral or Code a. Code is sale of goods & no bi/uni distinction b. Bilateral formed w/mutual promises of parties, perf. of both fully executory c. Unilateral promise 1 side & fully executed perf. the other (K no formed until fully executed 1 side)
   3. Telling if Bilateral or Unilateral a. Unilateral if offer warns only accept by act or if public offer b. Bilateral always if asks for return promise c. Offer indifferent (can't tell if promise or perf. requested) MAJ it's bilateral

Unit 3
Offer and Acceptance
Оферта и акцепт

   Офертой (глава 28 ГК РФ) признается такое предложение, которое: а) должно быть достаточно определенным и выражать явное намерение лица заключить договор; б) должно содержать все существенные условия договора; в) должно быть обращено к одному или нескольким конкретным лицам. Акцептом признается согласие лица, которому адресована оферта, принять это предложение, причем не любое согласие, а лишь такое, которое является полным и безоговорочным. Акцептом считается также совершение лицом, получившим оферту, в срок, установленный для акцепта, действий по выполнению указанных в ней условий договора. Будучи полученными, оферта и акцепт порождают юридические последствия для совершивших их лиц.
List of key terms and word combinations:
   – acceptance – акцепт, акцептование
   – cost-plus contract – договор на условиях оплаты фактических расходов с начислением определенного процента от этих расходов
   – counteroffer – встречное предложение; контроферта
   – current market price contract – договор на условиях оплаты по текущим рыночным ценам
   – firm offer – предложение товара или ценных бумаг по твердой цене; твердое предложение
   – invitation to trade – приглашение сделать оферту
   – mirror image rule – правило зеркального отображения
   – offer – предложение; оферта
   – offeree – адресат оферты; лицо, которому делается предложение
   – offerer – оферент; лицо, делающее предложение
   – option contract – опционный контракт
   – output contract – договор о продаже всей произведенной продукции
   – public offer – оферта, обращенная к неопределенному кругу лиц
   – rejection – отклонение, отказ
   – requirements contract – контракт «на все потребности покупателя» (предусматривающий закупку покупателем только у одного поставщика)
   – revocation – отмена, аннулирование; ревокация
   The first element of a valid contract is the existence of an offer. An offer is a proposal made by one party to another indicating a willingness to enter into a contract. The person who makes an offer is called an offeror. The person to whom the offer is made is called the offeree. An offer is valid only if it has serious intent, has clear and reasonably definite terms, and has been communicated to the offeree.
   An offer is invalid if it is made as an obvious joke, during an emotional outburst of rage or anger, or under circumstances that might convey a lack of serious intent. The offerer's words or actions must give the offeree assurance that a binding agreement is intended. Serious intent is determined by the offerer's words and actions and by what the offeree believed was intended by those words and actions.
   The offerer's words must give the offeree assurance that a binding agreement is intended.
   The terms of an offer must be sufficiently clear to remove any doubt about the contractual intentions of the offerer.
   The communicated terms of an offer must be sufficiently clear to remove any doubt about the contractual intentions of the offerer. No valid offer will exist when terms are indefinite, inadequate, vague, or confusing.
   In general, an offer should include points similar to those covered in a newspaper story – who, what, when, where, and how [much] – if it is to be clear, definite, and certain. In other words, the offer should identify the parties involved in the contract, the goods or services that will be the subject matter of the contract, the price the offerer is willing to pay or receive, and the time required for the performance of the contract.
   Sometimes laws permit offers to omit certain information. They can state that even though one or more terms are left open a contract for sale does not fail for indefiniteness if the parties have intended to make a contract and there is a reasonably certain basis for giving an appropriate remedy. For example, cost-plus contracts, output contracts, requirements contracts, and current market price contracts are enforceable even though they are not complete in certain matters. A cost-plus contract does not include a final price. Instead, that price is determined by the cost of labor and materials plus an agreed percentage markup. An output contract is an agreement in which one party consents to sell to the second party all the goods that party makes in a given period of time. A requirements contract is an agreement in which one party agrees to buy all of the goods it needs from the second party. Finally, a current market price contract is an agreement in which prices are determined with reference to the market price of the goods on a specified date.
   An offer must be communicated to the offeree to be valid. The communication of the offerer's intentions may be by whatever means is convenient and desirable. It may be communicated orally or by letter, telegram, or any other means capable of transmitting the offerer's proposal. It may also be implied. Acts and conduct of the proposing party are, in many cases, successful in communicating an intention to make an offer to another party witnessing them. When acts and conduct are sufficient to convey an offerer's intentions, an implied offer results.
   At times, an offer must be communicated to a party whose name, identity, or address is unknown. In such cases, a public offer is made. A public offer is made through the public media but is intended for only one person whose identity or address is unknown to the offerer. The classic example of a public offer is an advertisement in a lost-and-found column in a newspaper.
   By contrast, invitations to trade are not offers. An invitation to trade is an announcement published for the purpose of creating interest and attracting a response by many people. Newspaper and magazine advertisements, radio and television commercials, store window displays, price tags on merchandise, and prices in catalogs are included within this definition. In the case of an invitation to trade, no binding agreement develops until a responding party makes an offer that the advertiser accepts.
   The second major element in a binding contract is acceptance of the offer. An acceptance means that the offeree agrees to be bound by the terms set up by the offerer in the offer. Only the offeree, the one to whom the offer is made, has the right to accept an offer. If another party attempts to accept, that attempt would actually be a new and independent offer.
   Unilateral contracts do not usually require oral or written communication of an acceptance. When the offerer makes a promise in a unilateral contract, the offerer expects an action, not another promise in return. Performance of the action requested within the time allowed by the offerer and with the offerer's knowledge creates the contract.
   In bilateral contracts, unlike unilateral ones, the offeree must communicate acceptance to the offerer. Bilateral contracts consist of a promise by one party in return for a promise by the other. Until the offeree communicates a willingness to be bound by a promise, there is no valid acceptance.
   An offer may be accepted by either express or implied means of communication. In an express acceptance, the offeree may choose any method of acceptance, unless the offer states that it must be made in a particular manner. A stipulation such as «reply by Federal Express» or «reply by certified mail» in the offer must be carried out to complete an acceptance.
   To be effective, an acceptance must be unequivocal, which means that the acceptance must not change any of the terms stated in the offer. Under common law, this stipulation is known as the mirror image rule.
   Under the mirror image rule, the terms stated in the acceptance must duplicate the terms in the offer. If the acceptance changes or qualifies the terms in the offer, it is not an acceptance but a counteroffer. A counteroffer is a response to an offer in which the terms of the original offer are changed. No agreement is reached unless the counteroffer is accepted by the original offerer.
   In contracts for the sale of goods, as long as there is a definite expression of acceptance, a contract will result even though an acceptance has different or additional terms. If both parties are not merchants, the different or additional terms are treated as proposals for amendment to the contract. If the parties are both merchants, however, the different or additional terms become part of the contract unless (a) they make an important difference, (b) the offerer objects, or (c) the offerer limits acceptance to its terms.
   Acceptance may result from the conduct of the offeree. Actions and gestures may indicate the offeree's willingness to enter into a binding agreement.
   As a general rule, silence is not an acceptance. If, however, both parties agree that silence on the part of the offeree will signal acceptance, then such an acceptance is valid.
   Another exception to the general rule occurs when the offeree has allowed silence to act as acceptance. The offerer cannot force the offeree into a contract by saying silence will mean acceptance. The offeree, however, can force the offerer into a contract if the offerer established the silence condition.
   A rejection comes about when an offeree expresses or implies refusal to accept an offer. Rejection terminates an offer and all negotiations associated with it. Further negotiations could commence with a new offer by either party or a renewal of the original offer by the offerer. Rejection is usually achieved when communicated by the offeree.
   A revocation is the calling back of the offer by the offerer. With the exception of an option contract and a firm offer, an offer may be revoked anytime before it has been accepted. The offerer has this right, despite what might appear to be a emphasis moral obligation to continue the offer. An offer may be revoked by communication, automatic revocation, passage of time, death or insanity of the offerer, destruction of the subject matter, or the subsequent illegality of the contract.
   An offer may be revoked by the offerer communicating that intention to the offeree before the offer has been accepted. Revocation is ineffective if the acceptance has already been communicated, as by mailing the acceptance in response to a mailed offer. Direct communication of revocation is not required if the offeree knows about the offer's withdrawal by other means.
   When the terms of an offer include a definite time limit for acceptance, the offer is automatically revoked at the expiration of the time stated.
   An option contract is an agreement that binds an offerer to hold open an offer for a predetermined or reasonable length of time. In return for this agreement to hold the offer open, the offerer receives money or something else of value from the offeree. Parties to an option contract often agree that the consideration may be credited toward any indebtedness incurred by the offeree in the event that the offer is accepted. Should the offeree fail to take up the option, however, the offerer is under no legal obligation to return the consideration.
   Option contracts remove the possibility of revocation through death or insanity of the offerer. The offeree who holds an option contract may demand acceptance by giving written notice of acceptance to the executor or administrator of the deceased offerer's estate or to the offerer's legally appointed guardian.
   A special rule has emerged in international law. This rule holds that no consideration is necessary when a merchant agrees in writing to hold an offer open. This is called a firm offer.

   Exercise 1. Comprehension questions:
   1. What is an offer?
   2. What is to be done in order to remove any doubt about contractual intentions of the offer?
   3. What information should the offer include?
   4. What is a cost-plus contract?
   5. What does a current market price contract suppose?
   6. What are the ways to transmit the offerer's proposal?
   7. What is a public offer?
   8. In what cases are acts and conduct of the proposing successful?
   9. Who has a right to accept an offer/ how is an offer rejected?

   Exercise 2. Find in the text English equivalents to the following:
   Договор на условиях оплаты фактических расходов с начислением определенного процента от этих расходов; договор на условиях оплаты по текущим рыночным ценам; предложение товара или ценных бумаг по твердой цене; приглашение сделать оферту; адресат оферты; оферент; оферта, обращенная к неопределенному кругу лиц; отклонение; аннулирование.

   Exercise 3. Consult recommended dictionaries and give words or phrases to the following definitions:
   Отзыв акцепта; публичная оферта; извещение об отзыве оферты; безотзывность оферты; приглашение делать оферту; акцепт, полученный с опозданием; отказ от акцепта.

   Exercise 4. Be ready to talk on one of the following topics:
   1. Identify the three requirements of a valid offer.
   2. Differentiate between a public offer and an invitation to trade.
   3. Explain acceptance of an offer in the cases of a unilateral contract and a bilateral contract.
   4. Discuss the mirror image rule.
   5. Relate the various means by which an offer can be revoked.
   6. Explain what is meant by a firm offer.

   Exercise 5. Make up your own dialog on the case: In Universal Oil Products. v. S.C.M. Corp., the seller sent a written offer to the buyer that did not contain a provision for arbitration of any disputes. The buyer responded with a written purchase order that did contain a provision for arbitration. The court treated the buyers order as a counteroffer, rather that as an acceptance with a proposal for additional terms. Since the seller shipped the goods pursuant to the buyers order, the court found that the seller thereby accepted the counteroffer and became bound to arbitrate.

   Exercise 6. Resume in industry buzz: Offer: commitment communicated to identified offeree & containing definite terms
   1. Commitment: reas. person hearing words under these circum.
   believes speaker intends to enter into K (OBJECTIVE) (Public ad to identified offeree, 1st 10, is an offer)
   -> Code's way of objectively determining is course of dealing – worst is actual words used
   2. Communicated to ID'd Offeree (ACTUAL KNOWLEDGE)
   -> Another can tell him; public offer accepts & is ID'd at same time
   3. Containing Definite Terms: must address s/matter of K w/ certainty to be valid a. Real Estate (desc. & price)
   b. Goods (quantity, except offers for total requiremts based on past hx or offers for total outputs are based on last yr output or most mfrs)
   c. Services (term of e/mt by task or time, unless not stated then at will)
   -> All other material terms supplied by ct, but if offer tries to address material term, must do so w/certainty or offer is INVALID
   4. Limits on Terminating Offers a. Merchant Firm Offer Rule: Merchant who puts offer in writing & it says will hold open Xtime or indefinitely (Rrrevocable for time stated but not open more than 3 mos. w/o consideration b. Option K (like a mini-K): consideration to hold open or consideration substitute; substitute when offeree detrimentally, reas. & foreseeably relies on offer (sub bid) (detrimental reliance or prom. estoppel used)
   c. Offer to Make Unilateral K: to give time to perform. Reasons can't terminate (best to worst) (1) stay open reas. time if perf. Begun (2) reliance by offeree – supplies (3) doctrine of divisibility – reas. time to complete any «in works» (4) implied bilateral prom. to complete by commencing perf.
   5. Ways to Terminate b/4 Acceptance a. Revocation by Offeror
   (1) Express w/ ID'd offeree efftv when receives it (not read or actually knows of) w/ delivery to offeree, anyone offeree's control
   Express w/ public offer revocation same or comparable medium as offer
   (2) Implied when offeror does act preventing perf. and when offeree learns of act from reliable source b. Rejection by Offeree (refusal or counteroffer)
   (1) Express when offeror receives or anyone in his control (no actual knowledge); can never be revived
   (2) Implied (conduct) letting offer lapse past time stated or reas. time c. Operation of Law: s/matter destroyed b/4 accept; supervening illegality; death or incapacity of either offeror or offeree terminates OFFER

Unit 4
Mutual Assent and Defective Agreement
Обоюдное согласие и юридически дефектный договор

   Для заключения договора необходимо выражение согласованной воли двух сторон (двустороння сделка) либо трех или более сторон (многосторонняя сделка) (раздел I ГК РФ, глава 9 «Сделки»). Сделка, совершенная под влиянием заблуждения, обмана, насилия, угрозы, злонамеренного соглашения представителя одной стороны, а также сделка, которую лицо было вынуждено совершить вследствие стечения обстоятельств на крайне невыгодных для себя условиях, или в тот момент, когда данное лицо не было способно понимать значение своих действий или руководить ими, может быть признана судом недействительной.
List of key terms and word combinations:
   – business compulsion – понуждение
   – concealment – сокрытие, укрывательство; утаивание, умалчивание
   – duress – принуждение
   – fiduciary relationship – фидуциарные отношения
   – fraud – обман; мошенничество
   – liable – подлежащий ответственности
   – material fact – существенный факт
   – misrepresentation – введение в заблуждение; искажение фактов
   – mutual assent – обоюдное согласие, совпадение намерений сторон
   – nondisclosure – неоглашение, нераскрытие
   – rescission – аннулирование, расторжение, прекращение
   – undue influence – злоупотребление влиянием; недолжное влияние
   Each party to a contract is protected from the chicanery of the other or from certain mistakes that may have crept into their agreement and destroyed mutual assent. If mutual assent has been destroyed, the contract is said to be a defective agreement, and that party is no longer bound to the terms of the agreement. A defective agreement can arise as a result of fraud, misrepresentation, mutual mistake, duress, or undue influence.
   A wrongful statement, action, or concealment pertinent to the subject matter of a contract knowingly made to damage the other party defines fraud. If proved, fraud destroys any contract and makes the wrongdoer liable (i.e., legally responsible) to the injured party for all losses that result.
   To destroy mutual assent on a claim of active or passive fraud, the complaining, or innocent, party must prove the existence of five elements:
   1. The complaining party has to show that the other party made a false representation about some material fact (i.e., an important fact, a fact of substance) involved in the contract. A material fact is very crucial to the terms of the contract.
   2. It must be demonstrated that the other party made the representation knowing of its falsity.
   3. It must be revealed that the false representation was intended to be relied upon by the innocent party.
   4. The complaining party must demonstrate that there was a reasonable reliance on the false representation.
   5. It must be shown that the innocent party actually suffered some loss by relying on the false representation after entering the contract.
   When one party to a contract makes a false statement intended to deceive the other party and thus leads that party into a deceptively based agreement, active fraud occurs.
   To be fraudulent, statements must involve facts.
   In contrast, passive fraud, which is generally called concealment or nondisclosure, occurs when one party does not offer certain facts that he or she is under an obligation to reveal. If this passive conduct is intended to deceive and does, in fact, deceive the other party, fraud results.
   A fiduciary relationship is a relationship based upon trust. Such a relationship exists between attorneys and clients, guardians and wards, trustees and beneficiaries, and directors and a corporation. If one party is in a fiduciary relationship with another party, then an obligation arises to reveal what otherwise might be withheld when the two parties enter an agreement.
   A false statement made innocently with no intent to deceive is called misrepresentation. Innocent misrepresentation makes an existing agreement voidable, and the complaining party may demand rescission. Rescission means that both parties are returned to their original positions before the contract was entered into. Unlike cases based on fraud, which allow rescission and damages, cases based on innocent misrepresentation allow only rescission and not money damages.
   When there has been no real meeting of the minds because of a mistake, mutual assent was never achieved and the agreement may be rescinded. As in misrepresentation, mistake permits rescission.
   Some mutual mistakes are universally accepted as grounds for rescission. Others can give rise to lawsuits but not in all courts or in all jurisdictions. Among them are:
   1. Mistakes as to Description. When both parties are mistaken in the identification and description of subject matter, a mutual mistake exists, and rescission will be granted.
   2. Mistakes as to Existence. Proof that the subject matter had been destroyed before agreement was made also gives grounds for rescission. The agreement would be voidable if it were proved that just before acceptance the subject matter had been destroyed.
   3. Mistakes as to Value. When two parties agree on the value of the subject matter and later find that they were both mistaken, a mutual mistake of opinion, not of fact, has occurred. Mutual mistakes of opinion are not grounds for rescinding a contract.
   4. Mistakes Through Failure to Read a Document. Failure to read a document or the negligent reading of a document does not excuse performance on the ground of a mistaken understanding of the document's contents.
   5. Mistakes of Law. Misunderstandings of existing laws do not give grounds for rescission; in other words, ignorance of the law is no excuse. Rescission may be allowed, however, when mistakes have related to the law of another jurisdiction.
   Duress and undue influence rob a person of the ability to make an independent, well-reasoned decision to enter a contractual relationship freely. Duress may be viewed as an action by one party that forces another party to do what need not otherwise be done. Duress forces a person into a contract through the use of physical, emotional, or economic threats. In contrast, undue influence involves only the use of excessive pressure, and also requires the existence of a confidential relationship. Undue influence should not be confused with persuasion or a subtle form of inducement.
   Either violence or the threat of violence against an individual or that person's family, household, or property is physical duress. Emotional duress arises from acts or threats that would create emotional distress in the one on whom they are inflicted.
   A threat of a business nature that forces another party without real consent to enter a commercial agreement is called economic duress, or business compulsion. The court will rule the contract voidable on grounds of economic duress if the plaintiff can prove the existence of three elements:
   1. The complaining party must first show that the other party was responsible for placing the complainant in a precarious economic situation and that the other party acted wrongfully in doing so.
   2. The complainant must also show that there was no alternative other than to submit to the wrongful contractual demands of the party.
   3. The innocent party must also show that he or she acted reasonably in entering the contract.

   Exercise 1. Comprehension questions:
   1. In what cases the wrongful statement is not a fraud?
   2. What is the main difference between active fraud and passive fraud?
   3. What is fiduciary relationship?
   4. What does rescission mean?
   5. What are the kinds of mutual mistakes?
   6. What is the difference between duress and undue influence?
   7. What do duress and undue influence have in common?
   8. What does undue influence require?
   9. Are persuasion and subtle inducement considered to be undue influence?

   Exercise 2. Find in the text English equivalents to the following:
   Понуждение; укрывательство; принуждение; фидуциарные отношения; мошенничество; существенный факт; введение в заблуждение; искажение фактов; обоюдное согласие, совпадение намерений сторон; злоупотребление влиянием; недолжное влияние.

   Exercise 3. Consult recommended dictionaries and give words or phrases to the following definitions:
   Обоюдное согласие сторон; расторжение договора по обоюдному согласию; изменение отдельных пунктов договора; лицо, уполномоченное собственником; предусмотрены любые формы взаимозачетов; вправе изменить размер платы; критерии ничтожности и оспоримости сделок; заинтересованное лицо; отсутствие согласия; нарушение прав и законных интересов; отсутствие вещных прав; неуполномоченное лицо; конклюдентные действия; распространяется на отношения; оспариваемый договор.

   Exercise 4. Be ready to talk on one of the following topics:
   1. List the elements that must be proved to establish fraud.
   2. Identify situations that can give rise to claims of passive fraud.
   3. Distinguish between fraud and misrepresentation.
   4. Discuss the difference between unilateral and bilateral mistakes.
   5. Judge which types of mistakes provide appropriate grounds for getting out of a contract.
   6. Differentiate among physical, emotional, and economic duress.

   Exercise 5. Make up your own dialog on the case: In Weaver v. American Oil Company, the Indiana Supreme Court held that clauses exculpating an oil company from liability for its negligence and obligating the station operator to indemnify the oil company for damages attributable were unconscionable:
   The facts reveal that Weaver had left high school after one and a half years and spent his time, prior to leasing the service station, working at various skilled and unskilled labor oriented jobs. He was not one who should be expected to know the law or understand the meaning of technical terms. The ceremonious activity of signing the lease consisted of nothing more than the agent of American Oil placing the lease in front of Mr. Weaver and saying «sign», which Mr. Weaver did. There is nothing in the record to indicate that Weaver read the lease; that the agent asked Weaver to read it; or that the agent, in any manner, attempted to call Weaver's attention to the «hold harmless» clause in the lease. Each year following, the procedure was the same…The evidence also reveals that the clause was in fine print and contained no title heading which would have identified it as an indemnity clause.

Unit 5
Contractual Capacity
Договорная правоспособность и дееспособность

   Способность иметь гражданские права и нести обязанности (гражданская правоспособность) признается в равной мере за всеми гражданами. Правоспособность гражданина возникает в момент рождения и прекращается смертью. Способность гражданина своими действиями приобретать и осуществлять гражданские права, создавать для себя гражданские обязанности и исполнять их, определяется как гражданская дееспособность, которая возникает в полном объеме с наступлением совершеннолетия. Граждане могут совершать любые не противоречащие закону сделки и участвовать в обязательствах (глава 3 ГК РФ). Граждане могут быть ограничены в правоспособности и дееспособности только в случаях и в порядке, установленных законом.
List of key terms and word combinations:
   – abandon – отказываться (например, от права притязания)
   – affirmance – утверждение, подтверждение
   – capacity – правоспособность; дееспособность
   – disaffirm – отменять; отказывать в подтверждении
   – emancipated – эмансипированный
   – majority – совершеннолетие
   – minority – несовершеннолетие
   – necessaries – необходимые предметы или услуги
   – ratification – ратификация; последующее одобрение
   – rebuttable presumption – опровержимая презумпция
   The law has established a general presumption that anyone entering into a contractual relationship has the legal capacity to do so. This statement means that someone enforcing an agreement does not have to prove that when the contract was entered into the other party had contractual capacity. However, this is a rebuttable presumption; that is, a defending party (a minor, mental incompetent, or intoxicated person) has the right to attack the presumption in order to rescind a contract. Minors are generally excused from contractual liability due to their incapacity; their contracts are voidable.
   Under common law, the term minority described persons who had not reached the age of 18 or 21 depending on jurisdiction. Upon reaching that age, a person attained majority.
   In some jurisdictions, minors who become emancipated and are no longer under the control of their parents are responsible for their contracts. Emancipated minors include those who are married and those who leave home and give up all rights to parental support. These minors are said to have abandoned the usual protective shield given them.
   Minors sometimes lie about their ages when making contracts. Despite the misrepresentation of age, most jurisdictions allow minors to disaffirm or void contracts. Executory contracts, those that have not been fully performed by both parties, may be repudiated by a minor at any time.
   Goods and services that are essential to a minor's health and welfare are necessaries. Necessaries include food, clothing, shelter, and medical and dental services. In determining whether goods and services qualify as necessaries, the court inquires into the minor's family status, financial strength, and social standing or station in life. A minor's contract covering only the fair value of necessaries is enforceable against the minor.
   An individual may disaffirm an agreement made during minority before or within a reasonable time after reaching adulthood. Failure to disaffirm within a reasonable period of time after reaching adulthood would imply that the contract had been ratified. The method of disaffirmance is fundamentally the same as that of ratification. Disaffirmance may be implied by the acts of the individual after achieving majority, as by a failure to make an installment payment.
   Ratification, or affirmance, the willingness to abide by contractual obligations, may be implied by using the item purchased, making an installment payment, paying off the balance of money owed on a previously voidable contract, or continuing to accept goods and services provided under a contract after becoming of full age. Affirmation may also result from the person's oral or written declaration to abide by the contract. These and other acts ratify an existing agreement and elevate it to the status of one that is enforceable against an adult.
   Individuals who buy something from a minor have voidable ownership rights because the minor has the right to disaffirm the contract. The law permits a person having voidable ownership rights to transfer valid ownership rights to an innocent third-party purchaser of those goods. Thus, disaffirmance by a minor will not require the innocent purchaser to return the goods (real estate is an exception).
   Persons deprived of the mental ability to comprehend and understand contractual obligations have the right to disaffirm their contracts.
   
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