Is a written and signed agreement between2 people legally binding?

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Is a written and signed agreement between2 people legally binding?

My husband is purchasing a boat from a man who recently purchased a boat. We have a cashiers check in his name from our bank. The seller has not paid the taxes from when he purchased a few weeks ago. We were going to pick up the. Oat this weekend and the seller said he was going to pay the taxes on Monday, sign he title and mail it to us. I am uncomfortable with this, but my husband insists he’ll just write out an agreement that both of them will sign. Will this hold up in court should this purchase not work out in our favor?

Asked on October 13, 2011 under Business Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

A written and signed agreement between two people is a contract; contracts are enforceable. So a contract will be enforced by a court if need be, which means that if the other side does not perform its obligations, you may be able to--

1) Possibly get a court order forcing the other party to do what it was supposed to; and/or

2) Sue for compensation--that is, to recover any losses or economic damages you suffered.

That said, having to sue to enforce a contract itself costs money and takes time; also, it possible to sometimes sue and win but still be unable to get what you're entitled to, such as if the other party has no assets or income, or sufficiently hides his assets or income, etc. Therefore, if you feel that the other side is not trustworthy, you should not transact business with him.


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