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A contract is an agreement between two or more persons (individuals, businesses, organizations, or government agencies) to do or to refrain (stop) from doing, a particular thing in exchange for something of value (money, time or services etc.). The parties commit to certain obligations in return for certain rights.
An agreement between two or more persons that will be enforced by law may be:
Partly in writing and partly oral
A contract is a legally enforceable agreement between parties which is binding in law. The parties commit to certain obligations (things they must do) in return for certain rights (things they are entitled to). For a contract to be formed, it must be a bargain with at least two persons. A contract cannot be made by one person alone.
The Main Principles (rules) for a legally binding contract are:
• Formation of contract – Agreement (offer, acceptance)
• Intention to Create Legal Relations
• Consideration (exchange of value, quid pro quo, something for something)
• Capacity(mental and physical ability to enter the contract)
• Contents (terms, exclusions)
• Vitiating factors (misrepresentation, mistake, duress, illegality, etc.)
• Discharge “End” (performance agreement, breach, frustration);
Every day we enter contracts, most of those contracts are subconsciously entered into and we are rarely aware of the intrinsic nature of a contract and all of the essential elements which must be fulfilled in order to have a legally binding and enforceable contract, we simply take the law of contract for granted.
Simply buying a bottle of water or your morning coffee affords the same legal principles as buying a car or entering into a million euro business deal. Contracts do not need to be in writing to be enforceable, on the contrary, if you were to have a written contract every time you went to the shop for a paper or to buy a coffee there would be some very long queue’s as you would have to write the terms of the contract down and sign it, time-consuming and frivolous as very little, actually selling would be done due to the time which it would take per person to put all of the essential elements of a contract in writing. There are some contracts that require a written and signed deed (written document or agreement) mainly the sale and purchase of land, property, commercial property and loans.
If you are buying or selling something, of course, you can request that this sale or purchase be written down, you can set your own rules and as long as they are not breaching any legal rules or legislation and the other persons signs, then you can pretty much set out whatever rules you want, however, for most sales or purchases, this is a formality and not a requirement for the contract to be binding on both parties.
Agreements create obligations. Therefore, any agreement that is enforceable in a court of law is a contract and no person should be bound unless they have given their informed and true consent to the contract.
This basic introductory booklet is just that, a layman’s guide, it is not meant to be an academic textbook, it is merely a guide, however, saying that many first-year law students on the CPA, ATI and ACCA courses as well as year one legal proactive and LLB students find it invaluable as it introduces all the rules and principles in plain English and they can then get on with the important task of learning the terminology once they come to grasps with the principles. There is a self-test MCQ at the end of the book AND answers.
This guide is designed to explain ideas and concepts rather than to give legal definitions, including some of the following;
Formation of a Contract
Distinction between Offer and Invitation to Treat
Termination of an offer
Intention to Create Legal Relations (intention to be legally bound)
Family, Domestic or Social
Executed and executory consideration
Rules of Consideration
Doctrine of privity of contract
Contents of a Contract
Term or representation
Matter of Fact
Officious Bystander Test
Matter of Law.
Terms implied bythe Courts.
Implied by Custom..
The Parol EvidenceRule.
Criminology for Beginners has been written for aspiring criminologists or those wish to study criminology purely for personal interest. It has been written in easy to follow terms and will enable the student to understand the basics behind criminological theories, from the definition of crime to deviant and anti-social behaviour, from the Salem witch trials to medieval ordeals, the history of criminology, classical, neoclassical to modern day theories of crimes.
It goes on the discuss Crime and Punishment and the Legal Systems in Both the UK and Ireland, finally discussing the Police, Courts and Judicial systems who deal with the perpetrators of crime
Antisocial, deviant and immoral conduct
The History of Criminology
The Salem Witch Trials
The Enlightenment age
The Classical School
The Positivist theory
Franz Joseph Gall (1758–1828)
Charles Darwin (1809–1882)
Modern Theories of Crime
Anomie or Strain Theory
Social Learning Theory
Social Control Theory
An Economic Model of Crime
Deterrence and Econometrics
Ethnicity and Crime
Age and Crime
Distribution of Crime.” American Journal of Sociology
Mental Disorder and Crime
The Original position
The veil of ignorance
The Veil of Ignorance.
Rawls Reasonable Citizens
Rawls principle of Justice
The Chicago School and the US theories
Robert Park and Ernest Burgess
White Collar Crime
Theories of Violent Crime
Theories of Criminal Behaviour.
Psychoanalytic theorists and the origins of crime
Biological Theories of crime
Genetic – Twin Studies
Genetic – Adoption Studies
Intelligence and Learning in Criminology
Goddard’s work was discredited
Euphoria / relief / mood regulation
Recognising criminal addictions
A Theoretical Model of Behaviour Addictions for Addictive Offenders 88
Media and Crime
The Media Representation of Crime
The Irish Legal System
Source one – The Irish Constitution
Source two – European Community Law
The European Community Treaties
Source three – Common Law
Source four – Acts of the Oireachtas or Legislation
The English Legal System
The Rule of Law
The Different Departments in the Police Service
Criminal Investigations Department (CID)
The Prison service HMS Prisons
History of the Prison Service
Role and Function of the Probation Service
Magistrates’ and County Courts
The Crown Court
Penology in the UK
Penology in Ireland
Location of Prisons and Places of Detention
The Garda Siochána
The Civic Guards
Criminal division of the Gardaí
Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB)
Special Detective Unit
Civil Liability & Courts Act 2004
Interdisciplinary lecturing has to be one of the most exciting roles which a lecturer can hold. From the beginnings of Criminology and Forensic / Criminal Psychology and how these disciplines interacted with the law and sentencing in the criminal justice system, there is never a moment whereby one could truly say, I am bored.
My MSc research revolved around how poor nutrition in childhood can contribute to delinquent behaviour which in turn can possibly lead to criminal behaviour in adulthood. This research was exhaustive yet rewarding culminating in a finished dissertation which is available to read upon application.
The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity. The fears are paper tigers. You can do anything you decide to do. You can act to change and control your life; and the procedure , the process is its own reward.
At the moment I am in the early stages of many legal articles which revolve around sentencing of offenders in Ireland, I have also chosen to research the sentencing of offenders and also the leniency or perceived leniency in the sentencing of offenders i.e. gender bias.
I am an advocate of all citizens being educated in the basic legal principles and having some knowledge of the law. There are several links on this website whereby you can learn the basics of Irish law, please feel free to navigate my site and if you have any queries on any of the articles or content then you can contact me below: