A unilateral contract, according to legal definition, is a contract in which one party promises to do something in return for the performance of an act by the other party. The party making the promise is known as the offeror, and the party performing the act is known as the offeree.
In a unilateral contract, the offeror makes a promise to do something, usually to pay money or provide a service, in return for the offeree`s performance of a specific act. The offeror expects the offeree to accept the offer and perform the act. Once the offeree performs the act, the offeror is legally bound to fulfill the promise.
Unlike a bilateral contract, which requires mutual promises from both parties, a unilateral contract only requires performance from one party. The offeror may revoke the offer at any time before the offeree performs the act, but once the offeree performs the act, the offeror is obligated to fulfill the promise.
For example, if a business offers a reward for the return of a lost item, the offer is a unilateral contract. The business promises to pay the reward if someone finds and returns the lost item. If someone finds the lost item and returns it to the business, the business is legally obligated to pay the reward.
It is important to note that the offeree must perform the act specified in the offer for the contract to be enforceable. If the offeree performs an act that is not specified in the offer, the contract is not valid.
In conclusion, a unilateral contract is a contract in which one party promises to do something in return for the performance of an act by the other party. It differs from a bilateral contract in that it only requires performance from one party. Understanding the legal definition of a unilateral contract is important in ensuring that contracts are valid and enforceable.