Be Sure to Accept an Offer in the Manner Proscribed by the Offeror
Many businesses use standard form contracts which may or may not be negotiable by a potential business partner. It is not unusual for such a contract to include a provision like the following:
In order to accept this Contract, you must have an authorized representative execute it where indicated and return the signed original to the Company within 10 days of the date appearing on the first page hereof.
Because, as noted in a recent blog post, a series of emails can form a binding agreement, and in another blog post, it was discussed that an email could satisfy the signature requirement of the statute of frauds, one would expect that an email to the Company, stating: “We have your contract, and we agree to its terms” would create a binding contract (assuming, of course, that such an email was sent within 10 days of the date of the contract). In Host v. Gray, however, a Massachusetts Superior Court Judge ruled that an email purporting to accept an offer was insufficient because the offer stated that it should be “signed … and returned ….”… Keep reading