As opposed to tort and unjust enrichment , contract is typically viewed as the part of the law of obligations which deals with voluntary undertakings, and accordingly gives a high priority to ensuring that only bargains to which people have given their true consent will be enforced by the courts. While it is not always clear when people have truly agreed in a subjective sense, English law takes the view that when one person objectively manifests their consent to a bargain, they will be bound.  However, not all agreements, even if they are relatively certain in subject matter, are considered enforceable. There is a rebuttable presumption that people do not wish to later have legal enforcement of agreements made socially or domestically. The general rule is that contracts require no prescribed form, such as being in writing, except where statute requires it, usually for large deals like the sale of land.  In addition and in contrast to civil law systems, English common law carried a general requirement that all parties, in order to have standing to enforce an agreement, must have brought something of value, or " consideration " to the bargain. This old rule is full of exceptions, particularly where people wished to vary their agreements, through case law and the equitable doctrine of promissory estoppel . Moreover, statutory reform in the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999 allows third parties to enforce the benefit of an agreement that they had not necessarily paid for so long as the original parties to a contract consented to them being able to do so.
Without proper laws to act as guidelines that direct actions and behaviors of individuals, the society could be uncountable. This makes it highly impossible to undertake business relations even in a single country, let alone across the globe. Law foundation is based on the concept that the society requires an organization and a good structure for it to thrive. Laws are also enacted to help preserve hierarchy of authority as well as integrity of the economy, enhancing ethics and ensuring consistency in individual and business relationships.
To make them operational, resource users and producers may develop a legal entity or fiduciary association of citizen stakeholders which operates as a trust. Commons trusts are generally created to preserve depletable resources (natural, material), but many replenishable commons (social, cultural, intellectual, digital, solar) can also benefit from trusts that ensure their regeneration. Trustees set a cap on the extraction or the use of a resource according to non-monetized, intergenerational metrics such as sustainability, quality of life and well-being. For example, trusts can be developed for oil fields, aquifers and the atmosphere to ensure their long-term viability. Having protected a commons safely for future generations, the trust may rent a proportion of the resources under the cap to the private sector or to state businesses and utilities for extraction and production. A percentage of this rent could be taxed by the state and redistributed to citizens as dividends or subsistence income, with emphasis on the poor and socially marginalized. Rental or user fees may also be reinvested in the rehabilitation of depleted resources (such as land, rivers, oceans, atmosphere) and the enhancement of replenishable resources (arts, collaborative knowledge, digital codes, solar energy). A full-spectrum, commons-based economy could thus be created through a variety of such trusts: the commons would be protected for the future, the private sector would profit from producing the resources which they rent, and the state would tax these rents to restore degraded commons, fund social dividends and encourage free culture.