PROMISE PROMISOR PROMISEE
|RESTATEMENT (SECOND) OF CONTRACTS
§2. PROMISE; PROMISOR; PROMISEE…
(1) A promise is a manifestation of intention to act or refrain from acting in a specified way, so made as to justify a promisee in understanding that a commitment has been made.
(2) The person manifesting the intention is the promisor.
(3) The person to whom the manifestation is addressed is the promisee….
1. Manifestation of intention…. The phrase “manifestation of intention” adopts an external or objective standard for interpreting conduct; it means the external expression of intention as distinguished from undisclosed intention. A promisor manifests an intention if he believes or has reason to believe that the promisee will infer that intention from his words or conduct.
2. Illusory promises; mere statements of intention. Words of promise which by their terms make performance entirely optional with the “promisor” whatever may happen, or whatever course of conduct in other respects he may pursue, do not constitute a promise….On the other hand, a promise may be made even though no duty of performance can arise unless some event occurs (see §§224, 225(1)). Such a conditional promise is no less a promise because there is small likelihood that any duty of performance will arise, as in the case of a promise to insure against fire a thoroughly fireproof building. There may be a promise in such a case even though the duty to perform depends on a state of mind of the promisor other than his own unfettered wish (see §228), or on an event within the promisor’s control.