L’Estrange v Graucob (1934): What makes a contract binding ?

Signing a contractual document binds you even if you have not read it.

The claimant owned a cafĂ© and bought a cigarette vending machine for it. The order form which she signed in the course of buying the machine had terms and condition in small print which stated that the machine was sold without any warranty of any kind. Mrs L’Estrange failed to see or read the small print and bought the machine. The machine turned out to be faulty.

Her claim for damages for a faulty vending machine was unsuccessful as by signing the order form she had accepted all the terms and conditions of the contract and it did not matter if she could not see or read them. As there was no evidence of misrepresentation or fraud, the contract and its terms were legally binding.

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