III. Legality of Contracts, A. In General, § 216 - Legality of contracts, generally
In general, parties are free to contract as they see fit, on any terms regarding a subject matter in which they have an interest, provided that the contract does not impose obligations that are contrary to statute, public policy, or an established rule of the common law. Thus, the law recognizes and protects a broad freedom of contract and competent persons ordinarily have the utmost liberty of contracting, and may incorporate in their agreements any provisions that are not illegal or violative of public policy.
The law looks with favor upon the making of contracts between competent parties upon valid consideration and for lawful purposes, and courts generally enforce private agreements between parties. In fact, out of respect for the freedom to contract, courts are hesitant to interfere with purely private agreements. Courts may not declare illegal a type of contract specifically authorized by the legislature. Indeed, given the strong commitment to the principle of contractual freedom, courts should hesitate to infer from a statutory clause granting specific permission to contract under certain circumstances a general prohibition against contracting under other circumstances.
All case links go to Westlaw and require login.
Mendez, Jr. v. Hampton Court Nursing Center, LLC, 140 So. 3d 671 (Fla. 3d DCA 2014)
, review granted,
168 So. 3d 227 (Fla. 2014)
Corwin v. DaimlerChrysler Ins. Co., 296 Mich. App. 242, 819 N.W.2d 68 (2012)
Zachry Const. Corp. v. Port of Houston Authority of Harris County, 449 S.W.3d 98 (Tex. 2014)
Pest Management, Inc. v. Langer, 369 Ark. 52, 250 S.W.3d 550 (2007)
Sylva Shops Ltd. Partnership v. Hibbard, 175 N.C. App. 423, 623 S.E.2d 785 (2006)
Teodecki v. Litchfield Twp., 2015-Ohio-2309, 38 N.E.3d 355
(Ohio Ct. App. 9th Dist. Medina County 2015).
Wm. Lindeke Land Co. v. Kalman, 190 Minn. 601, 252 N.W. 650, 93 A.L.R. 1393 (1934)
As to contracts in violation of constitutions, statutes, regulations, or ordinances, generally, see §§ 223 to 230 .
Rodriguez v. Builders Firstsource-Florida, LLC, 26 So. 3d 679 (Fla. 4th DCA 2010)
Guideone Ins. Co. v. U.S. Water Systems Inc., 950 N.E.2d 1236, 74 U.C.C. Rep. Serv. 2d 806 (Ind. Ct. App. 2011)
In re Marriage of Matar and Harake, 353 Or. 446, 300 P.3d 144 (2013)