Acceptance Definition and Legal Meaning

On this page, you'll find the legal definition and meaning of Acceptance, written in plain English, along with examples of how it is used.

What is Acceptance?

n. it is the indication by one person to another of their willingness to contract on certain terms.

History and Meaning of Acceptance

Acceptance is a crucial concept in contract law. It refers to the moment when an offeror receives a clear and unequivocal expression of acceptance from an offeree. It signifies that both parties have agreed to the terms of a contract and are bound by its provisions. Acceptance can be expressed or implied, and certain criteria must be met for an acceptance to be effective.

Acceptance dates back to ancient Roman law, where it was considered one of the elements necessary to form a contract. Later on, common law jurisdictions adopted the concept of acceptance, and it became an integral part of the law of contracts. Today, acceptance remains a vital component of contract law, and its interpretation can significantly impact the outcome of legal disputes.

Examples of Acceptance

  1. An individual places an order for a product on an e-commerce website. When the order is accepted by the seller, it constitutes an acceptance of the terms of the sale, including the price, delivery time, and other conditions.

  2. A landlord offers to rent an apartment to a tenant for a particular period, and the tenant agrees to pay rent and follow the lease terms. The tenant's acceptance of the offer creates a legally binding contract, and both parties are bound by its provisions.

  3. An employer makes a job offer to a candidate, and the candidate accepts the offer. The acceptance creates a contract of employment, which sets out the terms of the job, including the salary, working hours, and other conditions.

Legal Terms Similar to Acceptance

  1. Offer: An offer is a proposal by one party to enter into a contract with another party. It is the starting point of the contractual process and must contain all the essential terms of the proposed agreement.

  2. Consideration: Consideration refers to the value exchanged between parties in a contract. It can be in the form of money, goods, services, or promises. Consideration must be present for a contract to be legally binding.

  3. Meeting of the Minds: A meeting of the minds is a vital element in the formation of a contract. It means that both parties have a mutual understanding of the terms of the agreement and have agreed to be bound by them.