Dover-Foxcroft, ME asked in Real Estate Law for Maine

Q: Seller in ME accepts a new offer before the expiration of the counter offer deadline that they gave to a different buyer

We are in Maine. We made an offer, sellers sent a signed counter with a deadline giving buyers 24 hrs, there was a “get a feel” question via text (nothing official). The next morning, buyers’ agent receives a text stating sellers accepted a better deal. The buyers signed the counter anyways and sent it before the deadline. Buyers have even deposited earnest money before the deadline.

Is the text of withdrawal binding?

Does this mean they now have 2 active contracts?

Is this legal/illegal?

How can we pause the process to straighten this out? What’s the next step?

Does this classify as “statue of fraud”?

Desperately needing advice!!!

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1 Lawyer Answer
Fred Bopp III
Fred Bopp III
  • Yarmouth, ME
  • Licensed in Maine

A: I previously responded as follows: The answers to your questions will depend primarily, if not entirely, on the language, terms, and conditions of the offer and counter-offer. There are arguments to be made both ways. Generally speaking, an offer can be withdrawn by the offeror at any time before it is accepted by the offeree, but that is the general rule. Pausing the process may involve invoking the mediation clause of the contract if there is one. These are complicated and very fact-depended questions. You should contact an attorney experienced in this area of law as soon as possible to protect your rights.

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