Welcome to my newest writing project. During the course of working on revising the New Mexico Uniform Jury Instructions on contracts, I spent a lot of time thinking about the Restatement (Second) of Contracts. The Restatement is a sort of treatise about what the law of contracts is (or perhaps, what its authors think it should be). While any individual state may differ from the Restatement on particular issues, by and large it is an excellent summary and resource.
Like any state, New Mexico agrees with the Restatement on some issues and departs on others. And, of course, New Mexico being a small state, there are still other topics that have not yet been litigated here. I’ve frequently had to figure out where we stand on particular topics. And so finally it occurred to me that maybe I should go about it in a more formal and permanent way. So I’ve decided to start building this Restatement of the New Mexico law of Contracts. Of course, since it is meant to reflect the law as it actually exists, it is not so much a restatement as it is a statement of the law. But I have modeled it on the Restatement to allow readers to easily compare and contrast the two.
I will be attempting to identify each section of the Restatement that has been addressed by New Mexico cases or jury instructions. While it is unlikely that I will do every section of the Restatement, my goal is to hit the important ones, whether or not New Mexico has discussed them, to see how we compare to the Restatement.
As the work proceeds, I’ll be filling out the table of contents below.
Topic 1: General
Topic 2: Manifestation of Assent in General
Topic 3: Making Offers
Topic 4: Duration of the Offeree’s Power of Acceptance
Topic 5: Acceptance of Offers
Topic 1 – The Requirement of Consideration
Topic 2 – Contracts Without Consideration
Topic 3 – Contracts Under Seal; Writing as a Statutory Substitute for the Seal
Chapter 6: Mistake
Chapter 7: Misrepresentation, Duress, and Undue Influence
Chapter 8: Unenforceability on Grounds of Public Policy
Chapter 9: The Scope of Contractual Obligations
Chapter 10: Performance and Non-Performance
Chapter 11: Impracticability of Performance and Frustration of Purpose
Chapter 12: Discharge by Assent or Alteration
Chapter 13: Joint and Several Promisors and Promisees
Chapter 14: Contract Beneficiaries
Chapter 15: Assignment and Delegation