Partridge v Crittenden, Facts, Issue, Decision, Key point

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This case is concerned with Invitation to treat (ITT) in the offer and acceptance chapter of contract law

Facts of Partridge v Crittenden

The Defendant advertised Bramblefinch cocks and hens for sale at a stated price. And the price listed was of 25 shillings per each. He was charged with the offence of “offering for sale” wild live birds contrary to the prosecution of birds act 1954.

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) brought a prosecution against the defendant under this Act. As in the trial court the defendant was found guilty but he appealed to the higher courts


The issue was whether his advertisement was an offer or an invitation to treat (ITT). If it was an invitation to treat then the defendant was not guilty, but if it was an offer he would have become guilty


It was held the “offer for sale” was an invitation to treat not an offer and so the defendant was not guilty.

Key point of Partridge v Crittenden

Lord Parker cj held that there was “business sense” in this invitation to treat because if they were treated as offers the advertiser might find himself contractually obliged to sell more goods that he in fact owned

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