BetterLawNotes-5 (2)

CONTRACT LAW

On 1st January Professor Slope agrees to write a new Contract Law textbook to be published by Littlehope University Press (LUP). The terms of their contract include the following:

£5,000 is to be payable to Slope by LUP immediately with a further £20,000 payable on delivery of the final chapter of the book.
Delivery to LUP of all chapters in the book is to take place no later than 30th November.
In the event that Slope fails to deliver all the chapters by 30th November, she is to pay LUP the sum of £15,000 by way of agreed compensation.

All rights in chapters delivered by Slope to LUP are to vest immediately in, and belong to, LUP such that LUP may publish the chapters, or sell its rights in them, in such manner as it sees fit.

In January Slope spends £1,000 on a computer for use in writing the book.

In July she delivers to LUP four chapters of the book, including the chapter on remedies.

In August Slope suffers a serious stroke. As a result, she is unable to continue to work on the book. Slope’s doctors advise her that it will be many months before it will be clear whether or not she will be able to resume her academic work.

In September, unaware of Slope’s condition, LUP spends £500 on marketing materials in preparation for the book’s launch.

In October, having learnt of Slope’s condition and her prospects of recovery, LUP sells the rights to her chapter on remedies to another publisher, Oxbridge Press, who plan to include the chapter in an edited collection on contractual remedies. Oxbridge Press pay LUP £10,000 for the rights to the chapter.

In December, following Slope’s failure to submit any further chapters, LUP is minded to demand payment by Slope of the agreed compensation provided for in the contract. But before doing so LUP seeks your advice as to its rights and liabilities under the contract.

Advise LUP.

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