Please see the DCA article linked below section VI.
Avvo doesn't pay us for these responses, and I'm not your lawyer just because I answer this question or respond to any follow-up comments. If you want to hire me, please contact me. Otherwise, please don't expect a further response. We need an actual written agreement to form an attorney-client relationship. I'm only licensed in CA and you shouldn't rely on this answer, since each state has different laws, each situation is fact specific, and it's impossible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue.
Most likely. You don't indicate the type of service being provided, but most likely, the Home Solicitation Sales Act applies to your situation, as Attorney Koslyn suggests.
If not, then the ordinary methods of proving an oral contract apply. It would be the plaintiff's burden to prove the terms of the contract (offer, acceptance and consideration) as well as the customer's breach and resulting damages. The plaintiff can prove his/her/its case with oral testimony as well as with documentary evidence.
Frank W. Chen has been licensed to practice law in California since 1988. The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice for a particular case. This Avvo.com posting does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author. For specific advice about your particular situation, please consult with your own attorney.
The posting does not specify what the services are or the amount of money involved. Some services are required by California law to be specified in a written contract. Telephone solicitations do have limits and there are rights of rescission.
A contract for services that is not to be completed within one year must also have a written contract to be enforced. See Cal. Civil Code, Section 1624, subdivision (a)(1). I would probably not advise a client to agree to a contract without it being in writing for this long of a term, as so much can happen and people forget or change their mind over a year. I agree with the concern that you express in your last sentence.
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