Contract Dispute? 4 Ways to Prove Breach of Contract In Court
Disputes regarding business contracts can be extremely stressful and complicated if you aren't consulting with a professional business lawyer. That's why it's essential that you take advantage of business contract law services throughout the entire process of any contracting agreement.
In order to succeed in a breach of contract claim, for instance, you, with the assistance of your business lawyer, will have to prove the existence of four things: an enforceable contract, your performance of the contract, the defendant's breach of the contract, and the actual damages of that breach.
Existence of an Enforceable Contract
For a business contract to be valid, four additional things will have to be proved:
- Offer -- This can be an intention to enter a contract pertaining to both (or more) parties. Keep in mind, however, that not all discussions involving future business deals will constitute as offers.
- Consideration -- This means that each party has agreed to give and receive something of value. A unilateral promise is usually not considered an enforceable contract, and neither are deals based on past services.
- Acceptance -- This is when the parties involved have clearly agreed to all of the contract's essential terms. It is often difficult to prove acceptance in oral contracts, which is why written agreements are generally preferred.
- Mutuality -- This means that all parties involved understood and agreed to the basic terms and substance of the contract after an initial meeting or discussion.
Your Performance of the Contract
You must prove that you held up your end of the deal. In order to prove breach of contract, it's essential that you accomplished each detail and each responsibility that you were accountable for and that you were obligated to perform. If you're suing for breach of contract and it's discovered that you didn't hold up your end, there is a chance that the entire contract will subsequently be void.
The Defendant's Breach
In addition to proving that you held up your end of the contract, you have to also prove that the other party (or parties) involved did not perform their contractual duties. Whether the defendant deliberately broke contract or not, you must prove the actual breach of the contract's terms. It's important to keep in mind that breaches of contract that do not take away value from the initial agreement are generally considered minor breaches, which are much less likely to succeed as a lawsuit.
Damages of the Breach
You have to be able to prove how the specific breach of contract led to various damages. Damages cover any lost money, lost service time, or any other expense incurred due to the breach of contract. The general measure of contract damages is the loss of the bargain, which means what you lost as a result of the other party or parties' breach of the contract.
If you have been involved in a potential breach of contract case and are in need of business litigation assistance or advice, you're going to need an experienced business lawyer. Contact Tony M. May, P.C. today.