Contract law terms require that individuals entering into the contractual agreement should be of majority age. Thus, minors are incapable of entering into legal contracts given that in case there is a breach of the contract liability cannot be imposed on the minor (Cheesman 2010). In this case, the company selling the used car discovered that Jeremy would be unable to pay the remaining installments for the vehicle because he had lost his job, as a result, the company would have no option but to pay back his installments.
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According to the law, it is not right for adults to enter into contractual agreements with minors as they end up being declared null and void. In this particular instance, due to the incompetence of the salesman and the sales company to verify the age of Jeremy, it resulted in financial liability to the company. As a result, the company will be forced to pay back Jeremy his total money by the fact that he was a minor at the time of the contract/transaction (Cheesman 2010). But if Jeremy’s actions and the act of entering into the contract was overseen with his parents or guardians in the presence of the sales personnel, the company will be able to sue for damages and the full sum by transferring liability to the parents or guardians who assisted the minor in making the decision and gave consent to the contract.
There is no legal action that could be taken against Jeremy as an individual since he is a minor, he can take action against the used car sales company and recover the full sum of the money which he had paid because contracts entered by minors are null and void (Cheesman 2010).
In the case:
Hallman v. Lemke
99 Wis.2d 241, 298 N.W.2d 562 (Wis. 1980)
“Hallman contracted to buy a car for $1250 from Lemke. Before he had paid off the car, it broke down and he took it in to be repaired (costing $637). He didn’t pay the repair bill, and the garage came after Lemke as the title-holder of the car. At the time, Hallman was still a minor. Hallman paid Lemke $1000 cash and had paid another $100 in installments at the time the car broke down. Lemke then endorsed the title to Halbman to try to avoid liability for repairs. Hallman returned the title and disaffirmed the contract and wanted all the money back that he had paid so far. While under possession the minor of the car was vandalized beyond repair. Hallman was able to disaffirm the contract under the infancy doctrine (aka the doctrine of incapacity), which protects minors from “foolishly squandering their wealth through improvident contracts with crafty adults who would take advantage of them in the marketplace.”Hallman sued Lemke for $1,100, the amount he had paid under the disaffirmed contract, and Lemke countersued for $150, the amount unpaid on the contract.” (Cheesman (2010).
It was held that:
The court held that minors cannot enter into contracts of such magnitude. In this case, Halbman was told to return the car in whatever condition it was in, but he gets all of his money back.
It is almost impossible to hold minors responsible especially when it comes to executable contract laws and bilateral agreements since minors are protected by the infancy doctrine.
Cheesman. R.H., (2010). The Legal Environment of Business and Online Commerce: Business Ethics, E-Commerce, Regulatory, and International Issues. Sixth Edition. New York: Prentice-Hall.