Contract Law - Am I on the right track?Watch
So here's the question:
Four friends, Abbi, Bemo, Celia and Dan were in a pub in January 2001 when Ellie, whom they had just met, persuaded them to join up with her in buying Megallions lottery tickets every Friday. Having decided on “the 5 Luckiest” as their name, they agreed that one of them would buy a ticket every week and that this role would be rotated in alphabetical order. It would be up to the person buying the ticket to select any numbers to play for. At 11p.m. on 27 July 2014, a ticket Ellie bought won £10 million in the Megallions lottery. The result was announced at 11.30pm on that day.
(1) Discuss the legal position of the parties in the following alternative situations:
- (a) Ellie selected the winning numbers on the advice of her partner, Hasla, to whom she had promised “at least one-fifth of any winnings”.
- (b) In May 2014, Abbi stopped buying tickets after telling the others that it was clear that the 5 Luckiest could never win anything. None of the other four bought tickets in the weeks Abbi was supposed to buy tickets.
(You need not discuss repudiation and breach here as they will be covered later in the course.)
- (c) Bemo emailed Ellie at 10.55 p.m. on 27 July 2014 informing her of his withdrawal from the 5 Luckiest. Bemo sent Ellie a second email at 11.01 p.m. telling her to “ignore my last email”. Ellie checked and read both emails at 10a.m. on 28 July 2014
So what I aim to focus on (a) is:
- Intention to create legal relations; did Hasla and Ellie, being partners as they were, intend to create legal relations between them?
- I would then discuss consideration; was there any form of consideration between Ellie and Hasla? Ellie might have put up a portion of 5 million if they won, but what about Hasla's case? Can winning lottery numbers be good consideration?
- Finally I was going to discuss privity; if it can be assumed that Ellie and Hasla created a binding contract can it still be enforced? Their contract would then interfere with the original 5 group members' agreements, as their proportions of the winnings would be reduced. This part I'm not entirely sure to include, some of my friends say it's not required...
I'm not entire sure how to answer (b) without discussing breach and repudiation here, my only thought to that was that Abbi would have to forego on part of her winnings in accordance to the tickets she did not buy.
(c) looks pretty basic as well, although I'm not sure if it's meant to throw us off-course. From my point of view it's just a question of the postal rule and instantaneous forms of communication; as Bemo's email was not read by Ellie his revocation of the contract was rendered invalid, and he would still be able to claim his share of the winnings. This part seems too small however. Our word limit is 900 for these three parts (the whole essay is 1.5k words, but the aforementioned portion will form 60% of the mark.
Since you're already at the end of my absurdly long post care to give some ideas on the second part? It's related to the first part:
Discuss the effectiveness of the traditional offer and acceptance analysis to transactions such as the one above.
Any help/critique is welcome. My main point was to see if I'm on the right track, and to see if part (a) deserves more words to answer it than say, part (c).