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Breach of Contract

Your business may be involved in any number of contracts. What happens if your company or the other party breaches a contract?

You might think a breach of contract claim should be straightforward but often it’s not clear who did what wrong. There are many issues that need to be resolved before one party or another can be legally responsible for harm done to another. If your business may have a breach of contract issue developing or the parties are openly accusing each other of a breach, we can help.

The contract may be in writing, created orally or through the actions of the parties. A valid contract creates obligations that need to be fulfilled by the parties who entered into the agreement. One party’s failure to fulfill any of its contractual obligations is known as a “breach” of the contract. It can occur when one party fails to perform on time, does not perform in accordance with the terms of the agreement or does not perform at all.

The plaintiff, the party bringing the lawsuit, has the burden of proving,

  • The existence of an enforceable contract,
  • The plaintiff’s performance of its obligations or the lack of performance due to a valid excuse,
  • The defendant (the party being sued) breached the contract, and,
  • The plaintiff’s damages due to the defendant’s breach of contract.

There could be any number of defenses to a breach of contract claim. A defendant could claim,

  • The contract is too vague to be enforced,
  • There was no final agreement between the parties,
  • There was a mutual mistake of an essential fact,
  • The plaintiff didn’t live up to its side of the contract, so it wasn’t obligated to comply with it,
  • There was no material breach of the contract,
  • The plaintiff waited too long to file a lawsuit to enforce the contract (four years in most cases), or,
  • The plaintiff didn’t actually suffer any damages or the claimed damages are too vague and speculative to be ordered.

The plaintiff could ask for,

  • Actual damages: The economic harm caused by the breach.
  • Liquidated damages: An amount of money that’s due, as stated in the contract, if a party breached it.
  • Attorney’s fees, costs: The contract may state a breaching party is responsible for the attorney’s fees and costs of litigation if a lawsuit is successful.
  • Enforcement: A court order stating the defendant needs to comply with the contract.

A party may find itself in a situation where the contract terms are so disadvantageous it may make more sense to try to buy out the other party or breach the contract and deal with the consequences than perform its obligations.

Contract law can be complicated and an experienced attorney can help you navigate through the legal process. Focus Law provides experienced representation no matter which side of the contract dispute they’re on. Schedule a consultation with a breach of contract legal expert today by calling now at (714) 415-2007.

Frequently Asked Questions About Breach Of Contract

Managing business disputes is a common area of the law that business owners may contend with; and contracts are among the most common areas of business that may call on the guidance of a breach of contract lawyer. At Focus Law LA, we understand the importance of clear and concise information when it comes to legal matters. In this FAQ, we aim to provide comprehensive answers to common inquiries about breach of contract, helping you to manage this complex area of law with ease.

What Is A Breach Of Contract?

A breach of contract occurs when one party fails to fulfill its obligations under the terms of a legally binding agreement. Essentially, it means that one party has not performed as promised according to the terms outlined in the contract. Our breach of contract lawyers are adept at identifying breaches and advocating for our clients’ rights in such cases.

What Are The Different Types Of Breaches Of Contract?

There are several types of breaches of contract, each varying in severity and impact. These include:

  • Material Breach: This is the most serious type of breach, where one party’s failure to fulfill its obligations is significant enough to undermine the entire purpose of the contract.
  • Minor Breach: Also known as partial breach, this occurs when a party fails to perform some of its obligations under the contract but the overall purpose of the contract is still achievable.
  • Anticipatory Breach: This occurs when one party indicates, either through words or actions, that it will not fulfill its contractual obligations before the performance is due.

What Are The Remedies For Breach Of Contract?

There are several remedies when a breach of contract occurs that aim to address the harm that was caused. These remedies aim to put the non-breaching party in the position they would have been in had the breach not occurred. Some common remedies include:

  • Damages: Monetary compensation awarded to the non-breaching party to cover the losses incurred as a result of the breach.
  • Specific Performance: In cases where monetary damages are insufficient, a court may order the breaching party to fulfill its contractual obligations as outlined in the agreement.
  • Rescission: This remedy involves canceling the contract and restoring the parties to their pre-contractual positions.

How Do You Prove A Breach Of Contract?

Proving a breach of contract typically requires demonstrating the following elements:

  • Existence of a Valid Contract: The first step is to establish that a valid contract exists between the parties. This may involve providing evidence of offer, acceptance, consideration, and mutual intent to be bound by the terms of the agreement.
  • Breach: The non-breaching party must demonstrate that the other party failed to perform its obligations as outlined in the contract.
  • Damages: Finally, the non-breaching party must prove that they suffered damages as a direct result of the breach.

What Is The Statute Of Limitations For Filing A Breach Of Contract Claim?

The statute of limitations for filing a breach of contract claim varies depending on the jurisdiction and the type of contract involved. In general, however, it is advisable to consult with a lawyer as soon as possible to ensure compliance with the applicable time limits. Delay in taking legal action could potentially bar your ability to seek remedies for the breach. Our experienced attorneys can provide guidance on the specific statute of limitations relevant to your case.

Taking Legal Action

Business owners facing matters involving breach of contracts are sure to have a number of questions for how to address the issue at hand. However, if you find yourself facing a breach of contract issue, it is crucial to seek legal advice promptly. Contact Focus Law LA today to schedule a consultation with one of our knowledgeable breach of contract lawyers. Let us help you protect your rights and interests effectively.

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