The Meaning and Classification of Contract

When you hear of the word “contract”, the first thing that comes to mind is a document full of legalese and is sacred to the parties.

While this is not entirely wrong, it doesn’t paint the full picture of what a contract is.

To be clear, you can simply define a contract as an agreement that can be enforced by law. The agreement doesn’t have to be in writing, under seal or contain legal language. It can even be an oral contract.

If you want a more concrete definition of a contract, that of Tobi JCA in Orient Bank (Nig) Plc vs. Bilante International Ltd (1997) 8 NWLR (pt 515) would be apposite. He defined a contract as:

…an agreement between two or more parties which creates reciprocal legal obligations to do or not to do a particular thing.

Classifications of Contract

The following are the different classifications of contract:

  1. Formal and simple contract
  2. Express and implied contract
  3. Bilateral and unilateral contract

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