When Schiff refused to pay, Newman sued. Should Newman prevail? Explain.

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When Schiff refused to pay, Newman sued. Should Newman prevail? Explain.


Irwin Schiff is a self-styled “tax rebel” who has made a career, and substantial profit, out of his tax protest activities. On February 7, Schiff appeared live on CBS News Nightwatch, a late-night program with a viewer participation format. During the broadcast, Schiff repeated his assertion that nothing in the Internal Revenue Code stated that an individual was legally required to pay federal income tax. Schiff then challenged, “If anybody calls this show—I have the Code—and cites any section of this Code that says an individual is required to file a tax return, I will pay them $100,000.” Call-in telephone numbers were periodically flashed on the screen. John Newman, an attorney, did not see Schiff’s live appearance on Nightwatch. Newman did, however, see a two-minute videotaped segment, including Schiff’s challenge, which was rebroadcast several hours later on the CBS Morning News. Newman researched the matter that same day and on the following day, February 9, placed a call using directory assistance to CBS Morning News stating that the call was performance of the consideration requested by Mr. Schiff in exchange for his promise to pay $100,000. When Schiff refused to pay, Newman sued. Should Newman prevail? Explain.

Explanation & AnswerSolution by a verified expert


This case encompasses the time span of the offer. Individual S is the offeror, a person who makes the offer, and it is clear from the words of Individual S that $100000 is going to be paid by them to anybody who calls the show, which is broadcasted live, with the numbers shown on the screen.
Individual N called after seeing the news report but it was too late since the offer was open only for a limited time span of the live broadcast. Individual S's offer did not serve to widen the original offer. This is shown in a report of News C in the morning and the offer was valid only for the night show.

Verified Answer

No, Individual N is not going to triumph since the offer is already closed.
No contract has been formed between Individual N and Individual S since the acceptance was inopportune by the Individual N.

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