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Business Law: Contractual Agreements Report (Assessment)

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Updated: Mar 24th, 2022

Eviction of a family member is a very time-consuming process that may take a great amount of time. In this case, we need to determine whether Mary (a landlord) has to provide accommodations to her son Tony (tenant). Mary insists that her son should live the house that she owns in Dublin. It is rather difficult to give a precise answer to this question since there are several factors that should be taken into account. First of all, one has to determine whether Mary is the sole owner of this house. For example, if this accommodation also belongs to her husband or to some other family member, she has no right to evict her son, and the opinion of the co-owner should not be overlooked (Putman, 2005).

It is quite possible that he/she will object to such a decision. The eviction of a family member requires the consent of all people who own a house or apartment. If Mary fails to receive this consent, she will have to accept the situation and let Tony stay in the house. Nonetheless, she will not be legally obliged to provide him any financial support. Therefore, Mary would first have to prove that she actually possesses the landlord’s right to evict. This is one of the issues that she should keep in mind.

Apart from that, we should discuss the nature of the agreement reached by mother and son. If she had made an explicit promise to him and said that he could live in the house for a certain period of time, Mary would not be able to evict Tony from this house. This kind of agreement can be described as a tacit contract. Under such circumstances, the court will have to ascertain whether Tony had any reasons to believe that he could stay in the house for a certain time.

Provided that his mother has told him that he was allowed to live in this place for a year or several years, and there are people who can confirm it, it will be very difficult for Mary to force her son out of this house immediately. At least, she would have to wait for some time until he finds other accommodation.

Furthermore, every lawyer would first ask whether Tony has lived in this house for three or more years. The problem is that if a tenant stays in the house within three years, the landlord would be legally obliged to offer a justification for the removal of this person. We can argue that Mary’s decision will be classified as the eviction without a cause which means that the landlord does not provide any justification for the termination of tenancy. Yet, in such scenario Mary may argue that she allowed her son to stay in the house under condition that he would apply to his studies and that this was a part of their agreement. So, Mary may point out that the tenant fails to fulfill his obligations.

Still, Mary is not legally bound to offer lodgings to her son because Tony is most likely out of age, and at this point, he must be able to care about himself. Under such scenario, Mary will have to send him the notice to vacate and her son will have to leave the house within a certain period of time. Tony will have approximately fifty six days at his disposal. This is the period of notice allowed to a tenant, if he/she has stayed in the house for more than two years (National Housing Organization, n. d).

We have described a scenario in which both sides failed to reach any consensus but such an outcome seems rather improbable. Given the fact that we are speaking about family members, we can assume that Tony and Mary will find ways of settling this conflict without the interference of the court. Hopefully, both sides will manage to reconcile with one another.

It should be noted that Tony and his mother are also disputing about the lottery wins. One should remember that the family frequently purchased lottery tickets and they won approximately €20,000 of cash prize. Tony argues that he purchased the tickets on his own without ever receiving compensation from his mother or his friend. Again some circumstances of this case are unknown to us. Namely we do not know whether this money whether Tony was employed or not.

If he had no other source of income during that time, he could not possible purchase a lottery ticket without someone else’s help. In addition to that, we need to know when exactly this ticket was purchased and why Tony did not express any discontent beforehand. If they won this money before the dispute and Tony did not make any claims for the rewards, he would have virtually no chance of winning this case.

Overall, we can assume that Tony will hardly be able to prove his rectitude in these conflicts. The only remedy that we can suggest to both sides is to seek reconciliation, if they believe that it is possible. At the present moment, Tony is not in the position to dictate terms to his mother and she may succeed in removing him from this apartment even despite the fact that he is her son.

The dispute between Dublin Language School and Strongarm Security Ltd lies in the domain of the Tort Law, in particular, we need to speak about such legal concept as negligence. The key difficulty of this case is connected with the fact that the rent contract signed by the two sides contains a very advantageous provision for the lessee. According to it, this company bears no responsibility for any damages to the property of Dublin Language School, even if it was caused by the negligence of the employees. To a large extent this provision was supposed to make Tort laws irrelevant to this case. Judging from this agreement, a lessee (Strongarm Security Ltd) does not own a care of duty to the lessor.

Overall, this provision can be regarded as a declaimer that may allow this company not to pay indemnity for the losses, sustained by Dublin Language School. At this moment, we do not know for sure why the management of this educational institution accepted this clause in the contract since virtually every rental agreement implies that a lessee bears at least some responsibility for the safety of the owner’s property. Moreover, negligent attitude toward this property is a breach of such contract. This is the most difficult detail of this case.

Nevertheless, one should bear in mind that the terms of contract can be overruled by the Unfair Contract Terms Act (Lawson 2005). According to this law, a contract term or provision does always exempt a person or a company from negligence liability. One of the provisions in this law explicitly states that “contract term or notice purports to exclude or restrict liability for negligence a person’s agreement to or awareness of it is not of itself to be taken as indicating his voluntary acceptance of any risk”1.

This means that one of the parties (Strongarm Security Ltd) did not warn the other about the potential risks, and the administration of Dublin Language School could not foresee these risks in an y possible way. We need to emphasize an idea that in this case, the decision will be left entirely on the discretion of the judge. The thing is that there are no objective criteria of such notion as reasonableness, and this concept is still not fully defined by modern legislators.

Yet, it should be mentioned that there are several exceptions to this rule. In particular, a company can be excluded from negligence liability by contractual agreement only if this agreement “satisfies the requirements of reasonableness”. For example, if the administration of Dublin Language School was fully aware of this liability exemption and these institutions received compensation due to possible risks, Strongarm Security Ltd may escape liability in this situation.

The key question that the court will have to address is whether Dublin Language School entered this agreement on equal terms. In order to make a more accurate evaluation of this case, a lawyer would have to read the very text of this contract since it is quite possible that it does not corresponds to the requirements, set for legal documents.

There are some other circumstances that one should take into consideration; namely the representatives of Strongarm Security can stress the fact that the fire was not caused by the negligence of its employees, but by the lack of fire-protection equipment in the building. Under such circumstances, they may also argue the responsibility for the damages does not lie on their shoulders. The outcomes of this case will also depend on the results of the investigation. Provided that the police ascertain that the lessee took every precaution against fire, and that it was caused by force majeure circumstances, Strongarm Security Ltd may also be excluded from liability.

Therefore, it is possible for us to argue that contractual agreements do not always exempt an individual or an organization from the necessity to indemnify, especially if we are speaking about negligence. At least, the management of Strongarm Security Ltd should not view this clause as the only safeguard against a possible lawsuit. There is great likelihood that it will be rendered irrelevant on the basis of other legislative acts such as Unfair Contract Terms Act or similar ones.

On the whole, this is one of those disputes which would be better settled through negotiation, rather than lawsuit. Both sides should remember that the assize may take a substantial amount of time and involve considerable expenses for both of them. This is why they should do everything possible to resolve this conflict without the assistance of the court.


Lawson. Richard. (2005) Exclusion clauses and unfair contract terms. London: Sweet & Maxwell. “Unfair Contract Terms Act 1977”. Web.

Putman. William (2004). Legal research, analysis, and writing. Cengage Learning.

Threshold (National Housing Organization). (n. d.) “The Landlord’s Rights”. Web.


  1. “Unfair Contract Terms Act 1977”. Web.
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