Verbal Agreement Laws in Texas

Verbal Agreement Laws in Texas: Understanding Your Rights

Verbal agreements are commonly used in everyday transactions, and they can be a convenient way to make deals without the need for lengthy written contracts. However, when disagreements arise, it can be difficult to resolve the issue without a written record of the agreement. In Texas, verbal agreements are legally binding, but there are limitations and exceptions that you should be aware of. Let’s take a closer look at the verbal agreement laws in Texas and what they mean for you.

What is a Verbal Agreement?

A verbal agreement, also known as an oral contract, is an agreement between two or more parties that is made verbally, rather than in writing. The terms of the agreement are discussed and agreed upon vocally, and the parties involved typically shake hands or verbally acknowledge their commitment to the deal. Verbal agreements can cover a wide range of transactions, including the sale of goods, services, or real estate.

Are Verbal Agreements Enforceable in Texas?

Yes, verbal agreements are enforceable in Texas, but only under certain conditions. The Texas Business and Commerce Code states that a contract may be oral or written, and that a contract is formed when there is an offer, an acceptance of the offer, and consideration. Consideration refers to something of value that is given or promised in exchange for something else. For example, if A agrees to pay B $100 for a used bike, and B agrees to sell the bike to A for $100, that is a verbal contract. Both parties have offered consideration (money and the bike), and they have accepted each other’s offer.

However, not all verbal agreements are enforceable in Texas. Some agreements must be in writing to be legally binding, including:

– Contracts for the sale of land, real estate, or property leases for longer than one year

– Contracts to pay someone else’s debt

– Contracts for the sale of goods worth $500 or more

– Contracts that cannot be completed within one year

In addition, it can be challenging to prove the terms of a verbal agreement without a written record. This can make it difficult to enforce the agreement, especially if there is a disagreement about the terms of the contract. To avoid this, it is always a good idea to put important agreements in writing.

What Should You Do if You Have a Verbal Agreement Dispute?

If you have a verbal agreement dispute, the first step is to try to resolve the issue through negotiation. This may involve discussing the terms of the agreement and trying to find a way to make both parties happy. If this is not possible, you may need to take legal action. To do this, you will need to hire an attorney who has experience in contract law and litigation.

If you decide to take legal action, you will need to prove that a verbal agreement was made and that the other party breached the terms of the agreement. This can be challenging, as there may be no written record of the agreement. However, there are ways to prove a verbal agreement, such as presenting witnesses who were present when the agreement was made or presenting evidence that shows the parties acted as if the agreement was in place.


In conclusion, verbal agreements are legally binding in Texas, but there are limitations and exceptions to consider. To avoid disputes, it is always best to put important agreements in writing, especially those that involve large sums of money or long-term commitments. If you do have a verbal agreement dispute, try to resolve the issue through negotiation. If this is not possible, seek legal advice from an attorney who can assist you in enforcing your rights.

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