Written by attorney Dana Elaine Quigley

Florida - Oral Contracts to Make a Written Contract and the Statute of Frauds


The Florida law regarding oral contracts is found in Jacksonville Port Authority v. W.R. Johnson Enterprises, Inc., 624 So.2d 313 (Fla. 1st DCA 1993), rev. denied, 634 So.2d 629 (Fla. 1994); W.R. Townsend Contracting, Inc. v. Jensen Civil Const., Inc. 728 So.2d 297, 300 (Fla. 1st DCA 1999). This body of case law establishes that to state a cause of action for breach of oral contract the Plaintiff must allege facts that, if taken as true, demonstrate that the parties mutually assented to “a certain and definite proposition" and left no essential terms open. Id.

Based upon the foregoing law, the Florida Courts have held that an oral contract to enter into a written contract is not barred by the Statute of Frauds unless there is evidence to show that the oral contract was incapable of being performed within one year. “The general rule is that an oral contract for an indefinite time is not barred by the Statute of Frauds. Only if a contract could not possibly be performed within one year would it fall within the statute." See, Acoustic Innovations, Inc. v. Jay Miller, 976 So.2d 1139 (Fla. 4th DCA 2008) and Byam v. Klopcich, 454 So.2d 720, 721 (Fla. 4th DCA 1984).

This analysis regarding oral contract to enter into a written contract has been applied in the Florida court's regarding co-habitation agreements. Logically, at first blush, these particular type of agreements would appear to be barred by the statute of frauds (especially when viewed under the fact that marital contracts are subject to the statute of frauds) but there is no per se bar on this issue in Florida regarding co-habitation agreements.

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