Adhesion contract – What is it, definition and concept | 2022

The adhesion contract is a type of contract where one party drafts the contract predisposing general conditions with no room for negotiation and the other party either accepts them, thus perfecting this type of contract, or does not accept them. In that case, the contract is not modified according to the will of the parties, but it is not signed.

These adhesion contracts are known as mass contracts, they are all those contracts of large companies that have stipulated equal general conditions for all those people who want to contract with them.

Usually, they affect the right of consumption, since they are the most used contracts in this area.

For example, imagine a mobile phone contract, on television they announce that if you contract with a telephone company you will have certain gigabytes at a set price. The consumer only has to adhere to these conditions so that the contract is signed and its legal consequences begin to unfold.

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Although as a contract it is an agreement of wills, it is not a pure negotiation between the two parties. This is so above all because what characterizes these contracts is that the predisposing party, which is the professional, sets the conditions and usually has much greater power than the party that hires him, the adherent. Imagine a contract with electricity companies, digital platforms, etc.

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Parties to the adhesion contract

The two parties that make up this type of contract are:

Contract Adhesion Parties Page 0001


The main characteristics of this type of contract are:

  • They are very common in legal traffic. More in the commercial than in the civil. Usually used for telecommunications and energy contracts.
  • They have a special regulation. In Spain they find regulation in the Law of General Contracting Conditions.
  • They are closely followed by the defense of consumers, since in some cases these clauses can become abusive for them. In addition, due to its complicated negotiation, it makes the consumer either adhere to the contract or cannot contract it. The trading margin is very small.
  • For these contracts to be valid, the predisposed conditions must be:
    • Legible, clear and understandable.
    • The adherent must have accepted all of them. He must have been informed about it.
    • The adherent must receive a copy of the conditions.

General contracting conditions

The main characteristic of this type of contract, which makes it easy to identify, are the general conditions of the contract.

They are predisposed clauses that are incorporated into the contract imposed by one of the parties, the predisposing party. Its external appearance, its extension and any other circumstance is indifferent. These clauses are intended to be incorporated into many contracts.

The fact that any of the clauses is negotiated does not mean that they cease to be general contracting conditions and, therefore, it continues to be an adhesion contract.

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