An agreement that is in anticipation of another subsequent contract that will supersede the terms of the earlier contract. In essence, the earlier contract is a commitment to a directly related to the formalization of a future agreement. With individual agreements, there may be a question as to whether such a preparatory contract is legally binding.
The performance of a contract that is preparatory and ancillary to the one sought to be enforced is not sufficient part performance to take a parol contract out of the operation of the statute of frauds. Lydick v. Holland, 708.