Organizations often agree to terms based on a written contract. These carefully drafted contracts usually contain milestones, the scope of the project, approved materials and an ultimate deadline. Unfortunately, one party might fail to fulfill their obligations to the satisfaction of the other party. When this happens, it is called a breach of contract.
Depending on the situation, there are different types of contract breaches, including:
- Material breach: When the business receives a significantly diminished benefit or a significantly different result, the party might claim a material breach of contract. The breaching party might have failed to perform contracted obligations, missed deadlines or completed a project with substandard materials.
- Partial breach: As the name would suggest, a partial breach essentially refers to a situation where the company received a deliverable, but the breaching party failed to complete a portion of their obligations. Whether it was a late delivery, partial delivery or an on-time delivery of incorrect materials, this minor breach can lead to business complications.
- Anticipatory breach: Here, the breach has not yet occurred, but the contract dispute becomes inevitable. Whether the breaching party has explicitly alerted the business that they will not fulfill their obligations or past actions make the breach a foregone conclusion, a claim of anticipatory breach can initiate the legal process.
- Actual breach: Business and legal professionals use the term actual breach to indicate a breach of contract has already occurred. In these situations, the breaching party has at this point refused to fulfill their contracted obligations by the due date or they have performed their duties short of the terms of the contract.
From small businesses to multi-national conglomerates, an organization relies on the strength of its various contracts to provide a solid foundation for numerous operations. No matter if it is a vendor contract, an employee agreement or a construction matter, a broken contract can lead to monetary losses, work stoppages and damaged relationships. Fortunately, numerous legal remedies exist to repair the damage caused by a breach of contract.