Case Brief Wiki


In May of 1918, Canadian Dyers Association (CDA) wrote to Burton and asked for a quote of the lowest price for the property on 25 Hanna Avenue. Burton replied on June 6th stating a price of $1,650 was the lowest price he would care to sell at. On October 16th the following year CDA wrote Burton again asking the price. October 21 Burton responded saying the previous price was the "lowest [he is] prepared to accept". CDA interpreted this as an offer and accepted by sending a cheque for $500 on October 23rd. On the 27th Burton's solicitor sent a draft deed, suggested a closing date of the 1st. On the 5th of November Burton's solicitor wrote to CDA stating there was no contract and returned the $500.


  1. Did the words and actions of the defendant constitute an offer?


Finding for the plaintiff, Burton's words and actions constituted an offer.


Middleton held that the letter was more than mere quotation of price but rather a statement of the price at which Burton was willing to sell. This constitutes an offer as it indicates a readiness to sell. Furthermore, Burton's conduct after October 23rd suggested a contract has been made; he didn't send out a letter denying the sale but rather wrote up a draft deed, did a title search and suggested a closing date.


Apply an objective test of the words and actions of the parties involved to determine if they constitute an offer or an invitation to treat.