Making a breach of contract claim: How can we help?

Making a breach of contract claim: How can we help?

Are you considering making a breach of contract claim but need help knowing where to start? Our commercial breach of contract solicitors at South Bank Legal are here to assist you.

Making a breach of contract claim involves proving that a legally binding contract existed, a breach occurred, and you suffered losses as a result. Contracts are a significant part of business operations, and your business can suffer if a contract is not honoured or adhered to as previously agreed.

If a contract has been breached and your business is suffering as a result, then you may be eligible to make a breach of contract claim. Making a breach of contract claim involves several steps to ensure your legal rights are protected and that you have the best chance of obtaining a favourable outcome.

For more information on making a breach of contract claim then please do not hesitate to contact a member of our team today for a preliminary discussion about your rights.

What is a breach of contract?

A breach of contract occurs when one party fails to fulfil its obligations as outlined in a legally binding agreement without a lawful excuse. Contracts can take many forms, such as written agreements, verbal agreements (although these can be harder to prove), or implied contracts (where the agreement is implied by the circumstances or conduct of the parties). A breach of contract can occur in various ways, including:

  • Failure to perform: One party fails to fulfil its obligations under the contract. This could involve failing to deliver goods or services, not completing work by the agreed-upon deadline, or failing to meet quality standards specified in the contract.
  • Partial performance: The party performs its obligations under the contract, but only partially. This could occur if the goods or services provided are incomplete or substandard.
  • Non-conformance: The delivered goods or services do not conform to the specifications outlined in the contract. This might involve providing goods of inferior quality or failing to meet agreed-upon standards.
  • Delay or time-related breach: One party fails to perform within the time frame specified in the contract. This could result in financial losses or other damages to the other party.
  • Anticipatory breach of contract: One party indicates, either explicitly or through actions, that it will not fulfil its obligations under the contract in the future. This could include stating an intention not to perform or taking actions that make performance impossible.
  • Fundamental breach: A breach of a fundamental term of the contract, which goes to the core purpose of the agreement, entitles the innocent party to terminate the contract and claim damages.

Not all types of contract breaches are equal. Some might be minor breaches of contracts, while others, such as a fundamental or material breach of contract, significantly impact the other party. The severity of the breach and its impact on the contract will determine the course of action and appropriate remedy.

What evidence do you need to make a claim? 

To make a successful breach of contract claim, you’ll need to gather sufficient evidence to support your case. The specific evidence required will depend on the circumstances of the contract and the nature of the breach. However, here are some types of evidence that are commonly used in breach of contract claims:

  • The contract itself: The primary evidence in any breach of contract claim is the contract itself. This includes the written agreement outlining the terms and conditions agreed upon by both parties. The contract should clearly specify each party’s rights, obligations, and any conditions or requirements for performance.
  • Correspondence and communications: Any communications related to the contract, such as emails or letters, can be valuable evidence. These communications may document discussions, negotiations, changes to the contract terms, or acknowledgements of the breach by the other party.
  • Documentation of performance: Keep records of your own performance under the contract. This could include records of work completed, delivery receipts, service reports, or any other documentation demonstrating that you fulfilled your obligations under the contract.
  • Evidence of non-performance: If the other party has failed to fulfil its obligations under the contract, gather evidence of the breach. This could include invoices showing payments not made, delivery records indicating late or incomplete deliveries or other documentation demonstrating the other party’s failure to perform.
  • Witness testimony: If applicable, gather testimony from individuals who have firsthand knowledge of the contract and the circumstances surrounding the breach. This could include employees, contractors, suppliers, or other parties who were involved in the contract negotiations or performance.
  • Financial records: Keep detailed financial records related to the contract, including invoices, receipts, payment records, and any other documentation showing the financial impact of the breach. This evidence can help quantify the damages you’ve suffered as a result of the breach.

What to expect when making a breach of contract claim with our team

When you contact our team at South Bank Legal in relation to pursuing a breach of contract claim, our solicitors will explain and outline the general process to you to ensure you’re aware of what to expect as we move forward.

Our solicitors will first make an initial assessment of your case by asking you to gather and provide all relevant documentation and evidence to solidify your claim for breach of contract. Examples of documentation may include the contract itself, emails, invoices and receipts to support your claim. From here, our lawyers can assess your situation, advise you on the likelihood of success, and explain the potential legal costs involved.

We might suggest trying to resolve the dispute directly with the breaching party in the first instance, as this allows you to attempt to find a resolution outside of court proceedings. However, if an informal approach fails, then our commercial lawyers will draft a Letter of Claim to send to the breaching party, outlining the details of the breach, the damages you have suffered and your proposed remedy to the breach. The Letter of Claim provides the breaching party with a final chance to resolve the breach before progressing to formal court proceedings.

If all of the above fail to result in a resolution, then we can initiate court proceedings. In some cases, the claim may go to trial. Here, a judge will hear arguments from both sides and decide whether a breach occurred and what damages are owed.

What legal remedies are available in a breach of contract claim?

If your breach of contract claim is successful, there are a few legal remedies available to you, depending on the specific situation and what best serves your company. Here’s a breakdown of the common remedies:

  • Damages: Financial damages for a breach of contract are often the most common remedy. It involves the court awarding you monetary compensation for the losses you suffered due to the breach. Damages aim to financially restore you to the position you would have been in if the contract had been fulfilled.
  • Specific performance: In certain situations, a court may order the breaching party to fulfil their contractual obligations precisely as promised. This remedy is typically used when the subject of the contract is unique or challenging to replace.
  • Rescission: This cancels the contract altogether. You may be entitled to get any money you paid back, along with returning any goods you received under the contract. However, this remedy may not be available if the contract has already been partially performed.
  • Injunction: A court order that instructs the breaching party to either do something (perform a specific action) or refrain from doing something (stop violating a term of the contract). This remedy is often used to prevent an ongoing breach of contract.

The most suitable remedy to a breach of contract will depend on the specific circumstances of your case. Consulting with one of our lawyers is crucial to determine the most appropriate remedy for your situation and effectively argue for it in court. We can advise you on the legal merits of your claim and the likelihood of success with each remedy.

How can South Bank Legal assist?

If you are looking to make a breach of contract claim, then our team of commercial solicitors can assist.

Our solicitors provide specialist legal services on a wide range of commercial disputes issues. These include intellectual property disputes, multi-million-pound shareholder disputes, commercial contract disputes and property disputes.

If you require legal advice on breach of contract claims or wish to discuss any of our services, you can contact us using the form below or telephone 02035765179 for a confidential discussion with one of our solicitors.

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.