In most cases, a contract is a legally binding agreement that you cannot rescind once it is signed. Some contracts include clauses that allow the parties to cancel the contract; however, the parties must take specific steps to legally cancel the contract without repercussions. If the parties fail to take the proper steps or the contract does not provide a way to legally cancel the contract, failing to perform is considered a breach of contract.
In our day-to-day lives, individuals deal with contracts every day from cell phone contracts and lease agreements to purchase agreements, and employment contracts. Contracts are a part of doing business for many people and companies. For complex legal matters, contracts provide a way for the parties to set forth the details of the agreement so that all parties have a clear understanding of what is expected. Contracts also reduce the chance of misunderstandings between parties regarding the details of a transaction.
What is a Contract?
In order to have a breach of contract, you must first have a valid contract. If the court finds that your contract is not valid, the terms of the contract will be unenforceable. Therefore, it is extremely important that you consult a contract disputes lawyer before entering a contract to ensure the contract is valid and enforceable.
A contract creates a legal obligation between the parties. In order for a contract to be enforceable, the following elements must be present:
- Mutual Assent – Both parties intend to form a binding agreement based on the terms set forth in the contract.
- Consideration – Something that is given or received. Consideration can be monetary; however, it can also include services, property, promises, acts, or agreements not to act.
- Capacity – This refers to a party’s ability to enter into a binding contract. For example, a child or a person who is judged incompetent lacks the capacity to enter a binding contract.
- Legality – For a contract to be enforceable, the terms of the contract must not violate any laws. For example, if a contract requires a party to commit a crime, the contract would not be enforceable.
If a contract does not have the required elements, the contract is not enforceable. Therefore, if one party breaches the terms of the contract, the other party does not have a legal remedy to hold the breaching party liable for damages. The first step in protecting your best interest is to ensure the contract you enter is a legally enforceable contract.
What Are The Legal Remedies For A Breach Of Contract?
If the other party breaches the terms of your contract, you may have several legal remedies. The types of legal remedies available depend on the specific circumstances surrounding the breach of contract. Our contract disputes lawyer works diligently to help you find a legal remedy that reduces further damage from the breach of contract. Examples of potential legal remedies include, but are not limited to:
- Specific Performance – This legal remedy requires the breaching party to fulfill all obligations under the contract by performing all actions required to complete the terms contained in the contract.
- Monetary Damages – If the breaching party does not fulfill all terms of the contract, you may be entitled to a financial award for damages. Common damages you may be entitled to receive for a breach of contract include restitution, reliance damages, and loss of expectation damages.
Can I Recover Attorney Fees For A Breach Of Contract?
In some cases, a contract addresses attorney fees and costs if one party breaches the terms of the contract. North Carolina contract law allows a party to recover attorney fees and costs in some cases if that party must take legal action to enforce the terms of a contract. To determine if you are entitled to seek attorney fees and costs from the other party for a breach of contract, our contract disputes lawyer must review the contract in question and the applicable law.
Contact an Experienced Jacksonville Contract Disputes Lawyer
“Attorneys Who Aggressively Protect Your Rights”
Welch and Avery represents clients throughout Duplin County, Onslow County and the surrounding communities. Call our office at (910) 665-9134 or contact us online today for a case evaluation. Our contract disputes lawyer helps you negotiate the terms of your contract. We prepare contracts that protect our clients best interests. We offer you the support, guidance, and legal counsel you need when transacting business of any type.
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