[Top] [All Lists]

Re: [TenTec] Verbal agreements, etc.

To: <tentec@contesting.com>
Subject: Re: [TenTec] Verbal agreements, etc.
From: "Paul Christensen" <w9ac@arrl.net>
Reply-to: tentec@contesting.com
Date: Sat, 30 Aug 2003 21:39:42 -0400
List-post: <mailto:tentec@contesting.com>
> > > Earlier Today (Friday, August 29, 2003), I received an
> > > acknowledgement from (call deleted) confirming that I was purchasing
the amplifier > and asking for  my mailing address and preferred method of

A few points worth mentioning: generally, contract law is state-specific -- 
particularly when the sale of goods are involved that involve the Uniform
Commercial Code.  A state may or may not adopt the UCC, but most states
acknowledge and adopt it by statute for the *sale of all goods.*  The UCC
describes the remedy for breach of contract and other ancillary aspects of a
contract based on the sale of goods.

When dealing with the sale of items over the internet that turns bad,
establishing  jurisdiction over a person can become problematic in the event
you want to hale him into court...in your forum state, not his.  Many states
have long-arm statutes that can reach an out-of-state defendant when certain
conditions are met.  Without a relatively high dollar amount in claimed
damages, you can forget about initiating a case like this in federal court.

Then, there is the issue of damages in the event of material breach.  Most
people think that because "a contract is a contract," that they are entitled
to the expectation interest of the negotiated item(s).  In most states, if
you breach a contract, you are entitled only to specific and actual damages.
How badly were you damaged because the other ham breached his end of the
bargain?  A couple long-distance phone calls?... a little personal time?

Unless the product is so unique that it is reasonably irreplaceable (e.g., a
Picasso painting), attempting to compel specific performance is a rough
ride.   In the end in such cases, a breach of contract in the early stages
results in little or no damage UNLESS the plaintiff placed reliance on the
deal and incurred incidental damages.  And thus, the timing of breach and
notice are of paramount importance in contract law.

Attorneys are held to a very high standard of professional conduct and
accountability.  In the event you have an issue with the ethics of any
attorney, the best way to deal with unethical conduct is to escalate the
issue to the ethics board of his state bar association.  In every state I
know of, the bar adheres to a "zero tolerance" policy on any unethical

I receive a bi-monthly newsletter from my state's bar association and the
most read section is the "rap-sheet;" a listing of all the attorneys in the
state during the preceding weeks who have had disciplinary action taken
against them.   When they've done something bad, it is posted for the world
to see.  The bar does not stand idly by in such matters.  They take each and
every complaint seriously.

-Paul, W9AC

Disclaimer:  The material contained in this response is for general
informational purposes only and does not constitute the offering of legal
advice nor does it establish an attorney-client relationship.  Consult with
your attorney for legal advice.

TenTec mailing list

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>