Contract under Seal Law & Legal Definition


A contract under seal is also termed as sealed contract, special contract, deed, covenant, specialty, specialty contract or common-law specialty. A contract under seal is a formal contract which does not require any consideration and has the seal of the signer attached. A contract under seal must be in writing or printed on paper. It is conclusive between the parties when signed, sealed, and delivered.

Delivery is made either by actually handing it to the other party or by stating an intention that the deed be operative even if it is retained in the possession of the party executing it. This is the only formal contract, because it derives its validity from the form in which it is expressed and not from the fact of agreement, or from the consideration.

Contracts under seal also bear little resemblance to ordinary contracts. A contract under seal is a written promise or set of promises which derives its validity from the form, and the form alone, of the executing instrument. The only requirements are that the deed should be intended and should be signed, sealed, and delivered.