CONSIDERATION V. RECIPROCAL PROMISE

Home Forums Consideration v/s Reciprocal Promise CONSIDERATION V. RECIPROCAL PROMISE

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      Subhashree Das

      Consideration and reciprocal promise have almost identical facades but they are different
      from each other on many terms. These are the foundations of every agreement and a
      contract con not be enforceable without any. In order to understand consideration and
      reciprocal promise and the disparities between them, we may need to take three concepts into
      consideration. The terms such as promise, reciprocal promise, and consideration are defined
      under Section 2 sub-sections (b), (f) and (d) respectively of the Contract Act,1872.
      The term Promise means the acceptance of a proposal. So, A offered to help B in her project
      and B accepted it, a promise is created. The promise is not enforceable. Hence, B doesn’t hold
      any legal obligations for A to comply with if he fails to do so. In other words, a promise only
      creates anticipation.
      The reciprocal promise involves two promises. The parties to a reciprocal promise may hold
      the consideration or any part of it. In the above case, B offers A, a motorcycle. Here, B
      commits a reciprocal promise. So, both are obliged to perform certain acts for each other
      that are not contingent and mutual which are legally binding. Such promises can be
      explicitly made conditional as well which involve contingency of the promise of another
      person. It also can be concurrent which includes multiple contingent events from either
      party. Both are forms of reciprocal promise and can be treated as exclusive contracts where
      consideration from both parties is involved.
      In case, where a promisee in order to fulfill the desire of a promisor does, or abstains, or
      promises to do an act is called consideration. The promise here has a price that is
      enforceable. It does not necessarily have to be beneficial to one party and detrimental to others. So,
      an agreement involves both reciprocal promises and consideration to give the effect a valid
      contract.

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