seahawk32 wrote:My Contracts exam is next week. I'm currently looking at some of my professor's old exams, and I really am poor at spotting the issues. I think one reason I'm struggling is because I don't really know how to approach a contracts problem. I understand the model answer when I look at it. If I know where to start my analysis, I do really well, but often I don't know where to start.
I seem to have figured out, though, that by first figuring out who is suing for breach and what remedy they are seeking (she usually puts this at the end of the problem), I can more easily figure out where to start (for example, a party is suing for breach, but in order to sue the other party has to have either 1) anticipatorily repudiated or 2) the suing party must have substantially performed, which naturally requires the question of whether the party has substantially performed, which requires an analysis of the terms of the contract, parol evidence, etc).
Any advice for K issue spotting/how to analyze a K problem (aside from the obvious was there consideration, offer/acceptance, etc...my prof seems to rarely ask about those issues) is welcome. Also, she doesn't really seem to be big on the UCC, as we've really only discussed in depth 2-207.
Here is my approach. I start with a general approach to all hypo's:
1) Is there an offer (look for definite terms, addressed to the offeree, necessary terms)
2) If there is an offer, is it a special offer (firm offer, option, unilateral, etc...)
3) If there is an offer, then is there an acceptance (mirror image rule, 2-207, performance as acceptance, etc...)
4) if there is an agreement, then is there consideration? Look for past consideration, gratuitous promise, pre-existing duty, unsolicited action, etc... that show there is no consideration
5) If there is no agreement, then is there another reason for enforcement (unjust enrichment, material benefit, reliance on a promise)
Then depending on the hypo, ask:
1) Does the SofF apply? Is it satisfied?
2) Does the PER apply?
- A general note, if there is mention of an oral agreement in the hypo, look for a SofF issue. If there is mention of a written K, look for a PER issue.
My K's class is two semesters, so we didn't get much further. I found that as I worked through these main issues, I would usually spot the things the professor was looking for - at least I hope so.