Assignment 1

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Ishi Panawalage (word count:1055) Legal Research Memorandum: Henry - 2BB17-2016 14 March 2016 1. Introduction As instructed, the following preliminary advice in this memorandum addresses Henry's legal position in relation to the Parkwest parking ticket matter and addresses possible issues that would arise if Henry does not pay the parking fine. 2. Executive Summary Based on the objective test, Parkwest and Henry entered a contractual relationship when Henry parked his vehicle in the car park. Henry breached the contract by failing to purchase a parking ticket. The court may find Henry not guilty if he rejects the offer made by Parkwest due to change of circumstances. Based on the facts Henry used the parking lot for free and recently Parkwest started charging parking fees. If Henry rejects the offer made by Parkwest as he have taken into account the changed circumstances, the court may find Henry not guilty and if the court finds Henry not guilty he will avoid paying the fine. Discussion To determine if Henry have breached Parkwest's contract we must first see if the various elements for a contract can be established, this must be that Parkwest have made an offer and the other party has accepted that offer. To determine if an offer was made by Parkwest we must employ the objective test that was used in Gibson v Manchester City Council 1 . It was stated in Tooheys v Blinkhorn 2 , that the objective test in Gibson v manchester City Council can be used to determines if a offeror have stated the terms upon which they are prepared to 1 Gibson v Manchester City Council [1978] 1 WLR 520. 2 Tooheys v Blinkhorn [2008] NSWSC 499
be bound if the other accepts. At the entry of the parking lot the conditions are displayed at the entrance of the car park and another sign near the shopping centre stating "pay parking, fine $60 for parking without a ticket". The facts tell us Parkwest have stated the terms upon which they are prepared to be bound if the other accepts it. The offer made by Parkwest is clear, definite and explicit and left nothing open for negotiation as it states "pay parking, fine $60 for parking without a ticket" therefore it constitutes an offer and Parkwest has a valid contract. To determine if Henry breached the contract, we must look at the contract. The contract states "pay parking, fine $60 for parking without a ticket". When Henry parked his vehicle at one of the Parkwest parking bays without purchasing a parking ticket, Henry have breached the Parkwest contract and is liable to pay $60 in liquidated damages. The legal ground the company is relying on to ask Henry to pay the parking fine is that when Henry parked his vehicle, he accepted Parkwest's offer. By not purchasing a parking ticket he have not complied with the conditions displayed at the entrance to the car park, therefore he is liable to pay $60 in liquidated damages for the cost of enforcing Parkwest's contractual rights. To determine if the conditions displayed at the entrance to the car park are good in law, we must see what the conditions displayed at the entrance are, therefore further information is required. The consequences of not paying the fine would be Parkwest suing Henry for breach of contract. The defense available for Henry would be change of circumstances. In Brambles Holdings v Bathurst City Council , it was stated:
"It is relevant to ask: in all the circumstances can an agreement be inferred... What would the reasonable person in the position of [the plaintiff] and a reasonable person in the position of the defendant think as to whether there was a concluded bargain 3 ." Henry was unaware of the fact that Parkwest started charging for parking as Henry used to park his vehicle for free, the court must determine what the reasonable person in the position of Henry and a reasonable person in the position of Parkwest think as to whether there was a concluded bargain. The situation changed and Henry can reject the offer made by Parkwest, stating that he will not use the parking lot again as Henry have taken into account the changed circumstances and possibly avoid paying the fine, Heydon JA in Brambles at 179 states: "A rejected offer could remain operative if it were repeated, or otherwise revived, or if in the circumstances it should for some other reason be treated, despite its rejection, as remaining on foot, available for acceptance, or for adoption as the basis of mutual assent manifested by conduct." The court may find Henry not guilty if Henry does not use Parkwest's parking lot again because the rejected offer cannot remain operative if it is not repeated. Also Parkwest may revoke the offer as Henry have not accepted the offer 4 as it was found in Dickinson v Dodds that the offeror can only revoke the offer if acceptance has not occurred, however the likelihood of Parkwest revoking the ticket is unlikely. Recommendations The most appropriate action for Henry to take would be to pay the parking fine. Henry can contest the fine at court by claiming that the changes of circumstances have been 3 Brambles Holdings v Bathurst City Council (2001) 53 NSWLR 153 4 Dickinson v Dodds (1876) LR 2 Ch D 463
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