Explain the terms Cross Offer, Counter Offer, General Offer, Implied Offer and Invitation to Offer.
Two offers which are similar in all respects made by to parties to each other, in ignorance of each others offer is termed as cross offers and they do not amount to acceptance of one’s offer by the other and as such no contract is concluded. For example: A of Delhi, by a letter offers to sell his house to B of A to buy’s A’s house for Rs. 10 lakh. At the same time, B of Bombay also makes an offer to A to buy A’s house for Rs. 10.1 Iakh. The two letters cross each other. There is no concluded contract between A and B because both the parties are making offers.
Counter offer means making a fresh offer instead of accepting the original offer, which means the rejection of the original offer. Thus the original offer is lapsed as and when the counter offer is made. The person cannot accept the original offer once the counter offer has been made even if he wishes to. For example: A offered to sell his bicycle to B for Rs. 200. B said that he would but it for Rs. 170. Here B’s offer to buy for Rs. 170 is counter offer and it terminates the original offer of A.
A general offer is an offer which is not made to a definite person but to the world at large or public in general. It may be accepted by any person by fulfilling the terms of the offer. In general offer, the contract is made with the person who having the knowledge of the offer comes forward and acts according to the conditions of the offer. An offer of reward made by way of advertisement for finding lost articles is the most appropriate example of general offer.
An implied offer is an offer which is not made by words spoken or written, in other words it is the one which is inferred from the conduct of a person or the circumstances of the particular case. For example: Public transport like DTC in Delhi or BEST in Mumbai runs buses an different routes to cant’ passengers who are prepared to pay the specified fare.
Invitation to Offer:
In case of invitation to offer there is no intention on the part of the person sending out the invitation to obtain the assent of the other party to such invitation, which makes it important for an offer to be distinguished from an invitation to receive an offer or to make an offer or to negotiate. In case of an invitation to offer the main object is to merely circulate information of his readiness to negotiate business with anybody who on such information comes to him. For example: Goods displayed by shopkeepers in showcases with price tags attached. Thereby the shopkeepers are not making an offer but an invitation to offer.