Breach Of Contract Remedies
Anytime a business or individual breaches a duly executed contract, the remaining party to it has an entitlement to relief, or a legal remedy. Generally speaking, remedies for a contract breach include those of damages, specific performance of the contract’s terms or rescission and restitution.
Payment Of Damages
The most common type of remedy for a contract breach is that of damages. This is simply payment of one type or another by the party that breached to the party that did not breach. Damages can take many forms, but they often have something to do with the type of breach that occurred.
The type of damages referred to as compensatory damages are designed to place the party that did not breach into the position they would have been in if the breach never happened.
Punitive damages are assessed against the breaching party in an amount over and above the amount required for precise compensation of the other party’s losses. The purpose is to punish the breaching party for committing especially egregious acts, though such damages are not frequently awarded with regard to business contracts.
The purpose of nominal damages is to provide a token recovery in case where no major loss of money was demonstrated by the party not in breach.
The idea behind liquidated damages is for the breaching party to pay the non-breaching party an amount previously stated in the contract documents themselves. They are established at the outset of a contractual relationship and are meant to be a fair estimate of the true damages that a breach would produce.
When money damages are insufficient compensation for a breach, a party may pursue “specific performance.” This is essentially when a court orders the breaching party to fulfil the terms of the contract as originally written. This can happen if the subject matter covered by the contract is unique, unusual or such that a financial payment would not adequately restore the non-breaching party to the state it would be in had the contract terms been met.
Rescission and restitution is a remedy in which a non-breaching contract party can cancel their agreement and seek full restitution if they have already provided a tangible benefit to the party in breach. Restitution is meant to place the non-breaching contract party into the position it occupied before the breach, and rescission works to void the entire agreement and relieve each party of further duties imposed by its terms.
If all of this sounds complicated and you think you are the victim of an unfulfilled agreement, then you need to consult an Auckland lawyer for breach of contract. They will be able to give you legal advice on your situation and explain your rights to you. They will also suggest the next steps you can take to bring about a resolution to your dispute. Often a letter from your solicitor will bring about a quick solution.
However, sometimes your lawyer will need to have a deeper involvement and the matter can take a bit more time to bring to fruition. In any event, sound legal advice is the best course of immediate action.