Statute of frauds

A statute requiring certain contracts to be in writing and signed by the parties bound by the contract. The purpose is to prevent fraud and other injury. The most common types of contracts to which the statute applies are contracts that involve the sale or transfer of land, and contracts that cannot be completed within one year. See, e.g. Yamaha Motor Corp., U.S.A. v. Calhoun, 516 U.S. 199 (1996).