The need to appoint someone to perform an act on behalf of the person appointing him underscores the need for agency relationship.

The essence of agency especially in modern terms can be gleaned from the following:

  1. The multiplication of tasks confronting man on a daily basis: a man finds out that he has too many tasks to perform and these tasks continue to increase
  2. The limitation of time: as tasks multiply, man discovers that he has no enforcement of time to perform those tasks.
  3. The technicalities involved in some transactions will necessitate appointing an expert or at least relying on the expertise of another person.
  4. It helps in the transaction of business over a long distance.


From the definition of several authors, ‘consent’ is an assumed ingredient of agency relationship. This position seems to have been buttressed by some decisions of the House of Lords. Among which are  Bordman vs Phibbs and Lamb and sons vs Goring Brick Co. Ltd.

Summarily, law of agency is an area of commercial law dealing with contractual, quasi-contractual and non-contractual fiduciary relationship that involves a person called the agent who is authorized to act on behalf of another called the principal to create legal relation with a third party.

It creates a relationship between a principal and an agent whereby the principal either expressly or impliedly authorize the agent to work under his or her control and on his or her behalf.

It has been said that the two major functions of an agent are:

  1. To enter into a contract on behalf of the principal (involve negotiating on behalf of the principal or bringing third parties into contractual relationship with the principal).
  2. To dispose of the principal property.

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