``The Economics of Agency Law and Contract Formation''
AbstractThis article addresses issues that arise in agency law when agents make contracts on behalf of principals. The main issue is whether the principal should be bound when the agent makes a contract with some third party on his behalf which the principal would immediately wish to disavow. The resulting tradeoffs resemble those in tort law, so the least-cost-avoider principle is useful for deciding when contracts are valid and may be the underlying logic behind a number of different legal doctrines applied to agency cases. In particular, an efficiency explanation can be found for the undisclosed principal rule, which says that the principal is generally bound even when the third party is unaware that the agent is acting as an agent for him.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by EconWPA in its series Law and Economics with number 9506002.
Date of creation: 14 Jun 1995
Date of revision:
Note: An 82KB LaTeX file. A postscript file is available on request from Erasmuse@Indiana.edu.
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://126.96.36.199
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- K - Law and Economics
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Kathryn E. Spier, 1992. "Incomplete Contracts and Signalling," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 23(3), pages 432-443, Autumn.
- Rasmusen, Eric & Ayres, Ian, 1993.
"Mutual and Unilateral Mistake in Contract Law,"
The Journal of Legal Studies,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 22(2), pages 309-43, June.
- Bengt Holmstrom, 1982.
"Moral Hazard in Teams,"
Bell Journal of Economics,
The RAND Corporation, vol. 13(2), pages 324-340, Autumn.
- Caspar Rose, 2010. "The transfer of property rights by theft: an economic analysis," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 30(3), pages 247-266, December.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (EconWPA).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.