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Contract (Rights Of Third Parties) Act 1999 Notes

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This is an extract of our Contract (Rights Of Third Parties) Act 1999 document, which we sell as part of our Contract Law Notes collection written by the top tier of Oxford students.

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Contract (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999

1.--- Right of third party to enforce contractual term. (1) Subject to the provisions of this Act, a person who is not a party to a contract (a "third party") may in his own right enforce a term of the contract if---
(a) the contract expressly provides that he may, or (b) subject to subsection (2), the term purports to confer a benefit on him. (2) Subsection (1)(b) does not apply if on a proper construction of the contract it appears that the parties did not intend the term to be enforceable by the third party. (3) The third party must be expressly identified in the contract by name, as a member of a class or as answering a particular description but need not be in existence when the contract is entered into. (4) This section does not confer a right on a third party to enforce a term of a contract otherwise than subject to and in accordance with any other relevant terms of the contract. (5) For the purpose of exercising his right to enforce a term of the contract, there shall be available to the third party any remedy that would have been available to him in an action for breach of contract if he had been a party to the contract (and the rules relating to damages, injunctions, specific performance and other relief shall apply accordingly). (6) Where a term of a contract excludes or limits liability in relation to any matter references in this Act to the third party enforcing the term shall be construed as references to his availing himself of the exclusion or limitation. (7) In this Act, in relation to a term of a contract which is enforceable by a third party---
"the promisor" means the party to the contract against whom the term is enforceable by the third party, and "the promisee" means the party to the contract by whom the term is enforceable against the promisor.

2.--- Variation and rescission of contract. (1) Subject to the provisions of this section, where a third party has a right under section 1 to enforce a term of the contract, the parties to the contract may not, by agreement, rescind the contract, or vary it in such a way as to extinguish or alter his entitlement under that right, without his consent if---
(a) the third party has communicated his assent to the term to the promisor, (b) the promisor is aware that the third party has relied on the term, or (c) the promisor can reasonably be expected to have foreseen that the third party would rely on the term and the third party has in fact relied on it. (2) The assent referred to in subsection (1)(a)---
(a) may be by words or conduct, and (b) if sent to the promisor by post or other means, shall not be regarded as communicated to the promisor until received by him. (3) Subsection (1) is subject to any express term of the contract under which---
(a) the parties to the contract may by agreement rescind or vary the contract without the consent of the third party, or (b) the consent of the third party is required in circumstances specified in the contract instead of those set out in subsection (1)(a) to (c).

(4) Where the consent of a third party is required under subsection (1) or (3), the court or arbitral tribunal may, on the application of the parties to the contract, dispense with his consent if satisfied---

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