Gone are the days when business deals were based on a mere conversation and handshake. Written contracts form the basis of many business dealings in North Carolina. However, what remedies does a business have if a contract is breached?
Oftentimes remedies for breach of contract are monetary in nature. Perhaps the most common remedy is the award of compensatory damages. In such an award the aggrieved party is paid enough to compensate them for what they were due had the contract been followed.
Another monetary remedy is restitution. An award of restitution means that the aggrieved party is paid back what they have already paid to the breaching party.
Sometimes the contract itself contains provisions on what to award if the contract is breached. These are known as liquidated damages.
Another type of monetary damages is “quantum meruit,” the legal way of saying “as much as he deserved.” This means that the aggrieved party will be paid what they deserve for whatever work they had performed prior to the breach.
Finally, there are punitive damages. Punitive damages are meant to punish the breaching party. However, this is not a common award and is generally only awarded in situations where the breaching party did something morally reprehensible.
There are also non-monetary remedies for breach of contract, including cancellation and specific performance. In cancellation, the court will determine that neither party has to perform what they agreed to in the contract. In specific performance, the court will order the breaching party to do what they agreed to in the contract.
Ultimately, this is only a brief overview of potential remedies for breach of contract. It should not be relied upon as legal advice, as breach of contract cases can be complex, and every case is unique. You can contact our law firm for more information on this topic.