A contract dispute occurs when any party in a contract has a disagreement regarding any of the contract terms or definitions. In order for a contract to be valid, there must be a "meeting of the minds." This means that all parties need to have a solid understanding of every contract term, and must be in mutual agreement as to the terms. Without a mutual agreement, the contract is not legally valid and may be contested in court.
In contract law, a contract dispute is usually considered a breach of contract, meaning that a party failed to perform a duty or promise that they agreed to in the contract. There are two different types of contract breaches: Material Breach and Minor Breach.
Material Breach: A material breach in a contract occurs when a party fails to perform a contractual duty and the breach is so crucial and deep that it makes the agreement or purpose of the contract irreparable. Usually this occurs when the heart of the contract is not satisfied because of the breach. When a material breach occurs, the non-breaching party does not have to perform their end of the contract and can sue the breaching party in return for any damages caused by the breach.
Minor Breach: A minor breach occurs when there is a breach of contract by a party, but the breach is very minor and does not disrupt the heart of the contract. When minor breach occurs, both parties must still carry out the remainder of the contract, but the non-breaching party may sue for damages.
Contract formation can often be a lengthy and involved process. There are many steps that need to be fulfilled along the way. In order for a valid contract to be formed, there must be: 1. an offer, 2. an acceptance of the offer, and 3. some form of consideration (or payment) for the goods or services at issue. Contract disputes can during any of these steps.
Some common types of contract disputes may include:
Even if a contract is properly formed, there may be disputes as to the performance of contract duties. If a party fails to perform their side of the bargain, it can cause a legal dispute. For example, if a seller fails to deliver goods that were purchased by the buyer, then the buyer my seek various legal remedies for "non-performance" of the sales contract.
Remedies for contract disputes are usually divided into two main options: legal remedies and equitable remedies.
In most cases, the parties will be able to choose between either legal or equitable remedies.
Many disputes can arise due to the parties not being clear on the contract terms. In some instances, it can even boil down to a single word or definition contained in the contract. Some tips for avoiding contract disputes are:
Contract disputes can involve many different legal concepts. These can sometimes be complicated and difficult to understand. You may need to hire a business lawyer if you need assistance filing a lawsuit for a contract dispute. Your attorney can represent you in court and can help determine what types of remedies might be available to you under the law.
Last Modified: 10-17-2017 11:25 PM PDTLaw Library Disclaimer
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