- An invitation for tenders had been made by the University of Millennium.
- The last date for submitting the tenders was 1st
- A total of 3 tenders was received by the University.
- Attender was posted by enviro on 15th May but had not been put into the tender box as it was too early.
- The tender from Greenland was received on 29th
- The tender posted by plant forever on 30th May was delivered to the university on 2nd
The legal position of the university with respect to plant forever enviro and Greenland.
Legal position of parties to an agreement only exist when the agreement is a contract. This makes it clear that all agreements cannot be considered as a contract. For the purpose of forming a contract there are a few specific elements which have to be present in the agreement between the parties. The first and foremost elements which are required to constitute a legally binding agreement and that of offer and acceptance.
For the purpose of constituting an offer no particular form is required. An offer is a statement which includes a promise of an act or omission if the individual to whom the offer is presented wants to do something in return as provided by the case Australian Woollen Mills Pty Ltd v The Commonwealth (1954) 92 CLR 424.
As provided in the case of an offer can be directed towards a group on an individual or to the whole world for the purpose of being accepted.
However there is an important but minor difference between an offer and an invitation to deal. The process of differentiating between an offer and invitation to deal is not a simple process and can only be derived through the intentions of the parties to the agreement. However guidelines have been set so various cases where difference between offer and invitation to deal had been set out.
In the case of AGC (Advances) Ltd v McWhirter (1977) 1 BLR 9454 it was provided by the court that an invitation to tender has to be taken as an invitation to deal. However attender may contain an additional offer according to which it would consider all the submitted tenders.
There are few ways in which an offer is terminated are namely rejection, revocation, failure to accept on time, the death of the offeror and condition failure. It was provided by the case of Byrne v Van Tienhoven (1880) LR 5 CPD 344 if an offer is expressly on impliedly rejected by the offeree it cannot be accepted by him again. Rejection can be in form of a counter offer or a straight refusal to accept. Thus it is necessary to find out the difference between a mere request for information and the counter offer.
Acceptance has to be made in the mode which has been provided by the person making an offer. However if no specific mode is provided the postal rule of acceptance as provided in the case of Adam vs Lindsay 1881 may prevail. According to the principles of this Landmark case and acceptance is said to be made as soon as the letter is posted and not when the letter actually reaches the person making the offer.
Through the statement which was published by the University it can be clearly made out that the statement was an invitation to an offer. This can be said because the statement did not contain important terms like price, services to be provided and date of delivery. As discussed above in the rules section there is no legal significance of an invitation to deal.
The tender which has been sent by Greenland was hand delivered before the invitation of tender expired. Although they had the second lowest price for the services to be provided, their tender was not selected based on the rumours that the company is unreliable. In such circumstances the University has no obligation to accept the tender made by Greenland because no additional offer was included in the invitation to deal which would have obliged them to consider all tenders made. As the company had rejected the tender made by Greenland by accepting the tender of plant forever the offer from Greenland got terminated.
The tender which was made by enviro was mistakenly not put into the tender box by the University staff. However, the university as discussed above is in no obligation to consider any tender which had been submitted in accordance to the invitation to deal. Thus the company has no legal obligations towards Enviro.
The contract of plant forever were accepted by the company through post. This is because according to the postal rule a letter of acceptance which has been correctly address has been posted it accounts to acceptance irrespective of whether or when it reaches the offeror. Thus, in this case the University has the right to claim compensation if plant forever is not able to provide the promise services of the tender.
The university only have a right against Plant Forever
To determine the legal effect of the correspondence taking place between 1st to 10th October.
As provided in the case of Ermogenous v Greek Orthodox Community of SA Inc  HCA 8 only when elements like price, specification of goods and mode of delivery are present in an offer for the sale of goods can the offer be valid.
As discussed in the previous question the most important part to determine whether a valid offer has been made or not is the intention of the parties. However the subjective intentions of the party making an offer is not considered by the court weather the court analyses the objective intention of the party through the application of the objective test. That signifies that if any reasonable person in the same circumstances would consider the terms of the offer of such nature that he would be induced to get into the offer by such terms then it would be deemed by the court that objective intention by the offeror was present.
When it comes to the acceptance of offer it has to be considered that the acceptance is made like the mirror image of the offer. The term mirror image signifies that the acceptance should be matching all the terms of the offer and if any term is contradicted by the acceptance it would result in a counter offer and an invalid acceptance. Thus a partial acceptance cannot be treated as acceptance at all. As soon as a contradictory acceptance is made the original offer which was made by the offer gets rejected and comes to an end
Footloose main advertisement in a daily newspaper for the sale of sandals. It has been provided in the above section that an incomplete offer accounts to invitation to deal. The advertisement only mentioned a fixed price without notifying the fairies that what kind of sandals would be provided at which price.
In addition the date of delivery the number of goods to be sold and the mode of payment was also not provided through the advertisement. Therefore from the given evidence it can be concluded that the advertisement was a mere invitation to deal.
As of 2nd October famous footwear sent a letter to footloose stating that the offer has been accepted. However as there was no offer and a mere invitation to deal the statement provided by famous footwear can be considered as an offer and not acceptance. However as the letter provided by famous footwear did not provide the delivery date the letter would not be considered as an offer.
A letter was sent by James shoes on the 4th of October in response to the advertisement made by Footloose by stating that they are willing to purchase 2000 pair of a specific kind of sandals at a price of 30000 including GST and delivery charges. This can be considered as an offer as if the objective test is applied in the situation a reasonable person would be induced by the wordings to get into a contract.
Footloose on 6th October made a counter offer to James footwear stating that they are willing to sell 2000 years of the specific sandals at a price of 30000 but such price would not include any delivery charges and GST. This was a counter offer because it did not match the exact terms of the offer made by James shoes.
James footwear on the 8 of October provided to footloose that they are ready to purchase the sling back sandals enterprise stated by Footloose. However the delivery date was still to be decided thus a valid acceptance did not take place and the contract was yet to be found.
It was on the 10th of October that Footloose made a call to James footwear where the date of delivery and the mode of payment was fixed and a proper contract was formed through the appropriate completion of a valid offer and acceptance.
AGC (Advances) Ltd v McWhirter (1977) 1 BLR 9454
Australian Woollen Mills Pty Ltd v The Commonwealth (1954) 92 CLR 424.
Blackpool & Flyde Aero Club v Blackpool Borough Council  3 All ER 25
Byrne v Van Tienhoven (1880) LR 5 CPD 344
Ermogenous v Greek Orthodox Community of SA Inc  HCA 8
Harvey v. Facey  A.C. 552.
Hyde v Wrench (1840) Beav 334
Smith v huges (1871) LR 6 QB 597