Contract law and real estate contracts in Washington are similar to their national counterparts, but there are a few unique things to know about contract law in Washington, including your responsibilities when entering a real estate contract. In order to be legally binding, contracts in Washington must include all of the following elements:
The first party must offer a kind of good or service for a given price. This good/service must be legal in the state of Washington, so you cannot create a legally binding contract for the sale of stolen goods, illegal drugs, or the like.
The second party must accept the offer and the price. If the second party presents a counter-offer, he cannot be held to the first price. In the same way, if the second party presents a counter-offer, it must be accepted by the first in order to be an official contract.
When we say “consideration,” it means that there must be some sort of exchange. Each party must gain something and lose something. For example, if you sell your guitar to your friend, you lose the guitar and gain the money, while your friend gains the guitar and loses the money. There must be this agreement to exchange in order to make the contract legally binding.
In the state of Washington, the legal principle called the Statute of Frauds exists, which states that certain contracts must be presented in some written form in order to be legally binding. These contracts include real estate sales, prenuptials, and certain sales of goods.
Some contracts in Washington only require an oral agreement in order for the contract to be legally binding. The issue we often come across with oral agreements is that they are extremely difficult to prove in court. Because of this, we always encourage our clients to have written contracts for larger agreements.
At The Law Office of Daniel Pizarro, we are passionate about providing our clients with dedicated, experienced contract law defense, as well as real estate dispute defense. Contact us today for a contract and real estate attorney in Seattle you can trust!