A contract is an agreement that creates obligations between parties, which
are enforceable by law. A contract involves elements such as capacity,
consideration, mutual assent, and legality. The remedies for a “breach
of contract” include general damages and specific performance among others.
A contract is essentially a promise that the law will enforce. If a promise
is “breached,” the law provides remedies to the injured party.
For a contract to be legally binding, the parties must have exchanged
a promise with adequate consideration.
When There is a ‘Breach of Contract’
When there is a violation of any of the agreed-upon terms or conditions
in a binding contract, it is said to be a “
breach of contract.” A breach can be anything from a minor violation, such as a late
payment, or it can be a more serious violation, such as the failure to
deliver a promised asset.
Contracts are binding and they hold weight in court, however, the injured
party must be able to prove that a violation occurred. In California,
breach of contract is covered under Sections 3300-3322 of the Civil Code.
To recover damages in a California breach of contract case, the plaintiff
must prove that:
- The plaintiff entered into a contract with the defendant;
- The plaintiff did the majority, if not all of what was required of him
or her under the contract, or they were excused from doing those things;
- The defendant failed to do something that the contract required them to do; or
- The defendant did something that was prohibited by the contract; and
- The plaintiff was harmed by the defendant’s failure.
The plaintiff’s complaint for a breach of contract must include:
1) the existence of an actual contract, 2) the plaintiff must have performed,
or their excuse for non-performing, 3) the defendant’s breach, and
4) the plaintiff suffered damages because of the defendant’s breach.
If the defendant’s duty to perform under the contract was dependent
on a certain event taking place, then the plaintiff will have to prove
that that event did in fact transpire.
Generally, when a material breach occurs with one aspect of a contract,
it constitutes a material breach of the whole contract. (
Brown v. Grimes (2011) 192. Cal. App 4th, 265)
Ordinarily, a breach of contract is the result of an intentional action,
however, negligent performance may also qualify as a breach, thereby giving
rise to alternative contract and tort actions.
Looking for an Orange County business litigation attorney to advise you
on a breach of contract case?
Contact The Mirkhan Law Firm
to ensure that your rights are thoroughly protected.