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Difference between express contract and implicit contract

The contract can be defined as any legally applicable agreement. So, the basic elements of a contract are the agreement and enforceability according to the law, in which the agreement is the result of an offer and acceptance. On the basis of training, the contracts are grouped as, express contract, implicit contract and quasi-contract. The contracts expressed connote the type of contract whose terms are expressly stated.

At the other extreme, i implicit contracts are those contracts that are not expressly declared by the interested parties, but by their act or behavior, the contract is created. Finally, quasi-contracts are those that are not actually a contract but are similar to a contract.

There are cases where express and implicit contracts are misunderstood by students. So, here we present the difference between express contract and implicit contract.

Comparative chart

Basis for comparison Express contract Implicit contract
Sense The contract expressed the one in which the proposal and acceptance, which result in an agreement, applicable by law, are expressed verbally. The implicit contract refers to a contract in which the proposal and acceptance, which lead to the contract, are expressed non-verbally, i.e. by other means.
Contract creation With words By conduct or behavior
Example Leasing agreement Hammer sale in an auction.

Definition of the express contract

Express contract, as the name suggests the contract, in which the parties to the agreement, either orally or in writing, establish the terms and conditions of the contract. In short, when the offer and acceptance of the agreement are communicated verbally, then the contract is said to be expressed.

Regardless of the mode of expression, the contract must show the mutual intent of the parties concerned to be bound. Furthermore, the expression must be explained and interpreted. It includes a certain proposal, unconditional acceptance and adequate consideration.

For example: John writes a letter to Harry, offering to sell him his home for 28 lakhs. Harry, in a written letter, agrees to the proposal. This contract known as an express contract.

Definition of implicit contract

Implicit Contract means a contract that is inferred from the activities and behavior of interested parties. In other words, a contract in which the elements, namely the offer and acceptance are made, without the use of words, then this type of contract known as an implied contract. Such a contract arises from the alleged intention of the parties. It can be of two types:

  • Implied by law : an implied contract by law the one in which the parties have no intention of entering into the contract. However, the law imposes an obligation to perform the contract, regardless of the consent of the parties. For example : Rome, by mistake of books to Alen, which belongs to Sera. Now, Alen's obligation to return the books to the Roma; there is also no intention to enter the contract.
  • Implicit in fact : in a contract implied by the fact, the obligation created between the parties, based on the circumstances and actions. For example : Buying groceries from a mall or retail store.

Key differences between express and implicit contracts

The points indicated below are substantial as regards the difference between the express contract and the implicit one:

  1. A contract expressed a contract, in which the terms of the contract are communicated verbally between the parties involved. On the contrary, an implicit contract can be understood as a contract, which is presumed or believed to exist between the parties or which is implicitly expressed.
  2. In the express contract, words are used to express the contract, which can be oral or written. On the contrary, in an implicit contract formed by the actions or conduct of the interested parties.
  3. The trust agreement between the author and the trustee is an example of an express contract. On the other hand, receiving money from the ATM is an excellent example of an implicit contract.


The main difference between the two types of contract differs mainly on the basis of the way in which consent is communicated and the evidence required. In an express contract, the terms and conditions are explicitly expressed. It differs from an implicit contract, in the sense that, a contract that should exist, based on the behavior of the parties involved.