As a general rule, oral contacts in New Jersey are enforceable – not that they are recommended; indeed. Our attorneys, we always recommend that contracts be in writing because they are easier to prove and leave less room for misunderstandings. However, if you can prove the terms of an oral contract New Jersey courts will generally enforce it.
A big exception applies to this, however, in the Statute of Frauds. Under the New Jersey Statute of Frauds, courts will refuse to enforce certain oral contracts even if you can prove them. This law is based on the premise that oral contracts are inherently less reliable, and writings in certain situations are necessary to prevent perjury or unfounded claims. The Statute of Frauds has its roots in the old Statute for the Prevention of Frauds and Perjuries which was adopted by the English Parliament in 1677, and was thus the law in England’s American Colonies when they became independent. The main elements of the Statute of Frauds are found in one section of New Jersey Statutes, but other elements are spread in different sections of Chapter 25 of Title 2A of New Jersey Statutes.
The main types of contracts which the Statute of Frauds requires to be in writing are: