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    Equitable Vs. Legal Remedies In A Breach Of Contract Case

    Tobin O’Connor & Ewing has two decades of experience protecting the rights and interests of businesses in Washington DC.

    Equitable versus Legal Remedies in a Breach of Contract Case

    If you are a small business owner, it’s inevitable that at some point you may encounter a client or vendor who breaches a contract with you. If you are preparing to sue someone for a breach of contract, you may have an option between equitable and/or legal remedies. Legal remedies are ones that allow the party not in breach to recover money, whereas equitable remedies involve resolution through non-monetary solutions. 

    Equitable Remedies

    Equitable remedies are actions rather than a financial award. They are often granted when monetary compensation or other legal remedies do not provide an adequate resolution. The court may require that legal damages must be unavailable before a judge will award equitable relief. In other cases, the judge may award equitable relief if it’s difficult to calculate an actual amount of damages.

    Some equitable remedies may include:

    Specific Performance — Specific performance is a court order that requires the breaching party to perform their part of the contract according to the original terms. This may be something like completing work or delivering goods that were already paid for.Contract Reformation — The court orders the original contract be rewritten to reflect the actual intentions of each party in more detail. This requires that the original contract be a valid one in existence, otherwise there would be nothing that requires rewriting.Contract Rescission — The original contract that was breached is now cancelled or rescinded. The parties may write a new contract that better details the requirements of both parties.Injunction — The judge can issue an injunction that requires one party to stop doing something specific because it is causing irreparable harm to the other party and monetary damages cannot replace or repair the issue.Constructive Trust — When a party wrongfully obtains the other party’s property and used it to increase the value of his or her own property.Legal Remedies

    In a breach of contract case, legal remedies can take several forms in the way of monetary compensation. These are compensation for damages sustained as a result of the contract breach. In addition, the court may issue reimbursement for various items like out-of-pocket costs associated with the breach, or in limited situations, a judge may award punitive damages to ensure the defendant ‘learns’ from their behavior.

    For example, if you entered into a contract for 100 hours of work, but the client cancels during the course of the contract, then you have a breach of contract case for the income you lost by the cancellation. If you hire an agency to complete a project within a certain time frame and lose out on $5,000 because they didn’t complete their deliverables, you can sue for breach of contract.

    Retaining a Washington DC Business Attorney

    If you run a business, it’s important to have a Washington, DC business attorney who can provide advice and handle legal matters as they arise, including a breach of contract. Tobin O’Connor & Ewing has two decades of experience protecting the rights and interests of businesses in Washington DC. Contact us at 202-362-5900 to schedule a consultation.

    By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing | Posted on September 27, 2018

    Tags: DC Breach of Contract Case, Washington DC Business Attorney, Washington DC Business Attorneys

    Source : www.tobinoconnor.com

    What's the Differences between Legal and Equitable Remedies?

    Legal remedies pertain to the monetary damages as compensation received by a non-breaching party in a contract. On the other hand, equitable remedies pertain to damages that cannot be resoved with monetary compensation. The LegalMatch online library contains legal insights to help you with your case. View more.

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    What's the Differences between Legal and Equitable Remedies?

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    What Is a Remedy?

    A remedy is type of compensation given to someone through a legal proceeding. A remedy is given to restore an injured or aggrieved person to the position they were in before the injury or wrongful action occurred.

    Remedies can generally be divided into two categories: legal and equitable. Legal remedies allow the non-breaching party to recover monetary damages. In contrast, equitable remedies are non-monetary solutions to resolve the disputed issue.

    In addition to these two remedies, a court may also order a declaratory judgment. This is where the court determines individual rights in a particular situation without awarding damages.

    Contents

    What Is an Equitable Remedy?

    Equitable remedies are a distinct category of remedies that can be obtained in a breach of contract situation. Equitable remedies are actions that the court prescribes which will serve to resolve the breach or dispute.

    Equitable remedies are typically granted when legal remedies or monetary compensation cannot adequately resolve the wrongdoing. It is often a requirement that legal damages be unavailable before a court will decide to issue equitable relief. Equitable remedies can include:

    Specific Performance: A court order which requires the party in breach to completely perform their part of the bargain according to the contract. For example, this can include requiring the breaching party to deliver goods which have already been paid for, or to render payment for services.Contract Rescission: This is where the old contract which was breached is rescinded or cancelled. A new contract may be written which more clearly addresses the different needs of each party.Contract Reformation: The former contract is rewritten in a manner that reflects the true intentions of each party more accurately. The remedy of reformation requires that a valid, working contract be in existence (otherwise there is nothing to re-write). Reformation is often prescribed where there was a mistake or misrepresentation in one of the contract terms. A contract may be reformed in whole or in part. Reformation is sometimes called “rectification.Injunction: A court order that demands a party to stop doing a specific act because the act is causing irreparable injury to the plaintiff which monetary damages cannot replace.Constructive Trust: Where defendant wrongfully obtained plaintiff’s property and the defendant has used plaintiff’s property to increase the value of his own property.

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    What Is an Legal Remedy?

    Legal remedies allow the non-breaching party to recover monetary damages. These types of damages are designed to compensate the plaintiff for the harm that has been done. These include damages such as compensatory damages, lost profits, punitive damages, lost wages, expectation damages, and restitutionary damages to prevent unjust enrichment of the defendant.

    Seeking Legal Help

    If you are involved in a legal dispute, you should contact an attorney with experience handling similar cases. Your attorney will help you obtain the best possible remedies to resolve your dispute.

    Ki Akhbari

    LegalMatch Legal Writer

    Original Author

    Ki received his undergraduate degree in Political Science from Santa C ... Read More

    Jose Rivera Managing Editor Editor

    Last Updated: May 8, 2018

    Source : www.legalmatch.com

    Differences Between Legal Remedies & Equitable Remedies of Contract Law

    Differences Between Legal Remedies & Equitable Remedies of Contract Law. When your business enters into a contract, you expect the other party to perform in good faith. Nevertheless, if the party does not properly perform its contractual obligations, you can sue for breach of contract in a court of law relying on ...

    Differences Between Legal Remedies & Equitable Remedies of Contract Law

    Small Business |

    Business & Workplace Regulations

    | Laws

    By Trudie Longren Updated December 07, 2021

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    When your business enters into a contract, you expect the other party to perform in good faith. Nevertheless, if the party does not properly perform its contractual obligations, you can sue for breach of contract in a court of law relying on this basic rule – whenever a legal wrong is committed, there must be a legal remedy. The court will choose an appropriate legal or equitable remedy to redress the wrong suffered from the nonperforming party's actions.

    Understanding Remedy Basics

    Legal Remedies are a legal way of either placing an aggrieved party back in the position it was in before the nonperformance, or placing the party in the same position as if the contract had been performed. Different types of remedies in law are meant to address a variety of situations and breaches of contract. If your business signs a contract with a window washer and pays $1,000 in advance, but the cleaning company breaches the contract by failing to send employees to clean the windows, the cleaning company's breach has cost your business $1,000. When you file a lawsuit against the window washer for breach of contract, the court may order the company to refund your $1,000 deposit as a remedy for the breach – thereby restoring the your business to its original position.

    Historical Distinction: Law and Equity

    The American legal system was founded on English common law tradition in which, historically, there were two distinct types of courts – courts of law and courts of equity. The courts of law were considered the primary venue for seeking redress for wrongs, including breaches of contract. The courts of equity were viewed as the court of last resort when the remedy in the court of law was insufficient or unfair. In the early American legal system, chancery courts were founded to issue equitable remedies, but those courts have been abolished in all but a few jurisdictions and, today, American courts of law can issue both legal and equitable remedies.

    Compensatory and Consequential Legal Remedies

    According to Miller Law, two legal remedies – compensatory and consequential damages – are monetary compensation to place the aggrieved party in the same position he would have been in if the contract had been performed and to permit recovery of any monetary losses suffered as a consequence of the breach. If your web-marketing consulting business concludes a contract for 50 hours of work on an accountant's web advertising for $50 per hour, but the accountant calls you halfway through your work to cancel the contract, you can recover $2,500 in compensatory damages. On the other hand, if the accountant tells you the ad campaign must be completed in one month's time to attract new clients for the upcoming tax season and generate $2,000 in additional revenues, but you fail to complete the work on time, the accountant can bring a lawsuit and request consequential damages of $2,000 – the loss of revenue as a result of you not completing the contract on time – in addition to compensatory damages.

    Equitable Remedies 101

    Investopedia reports that equitable remedies are related to fairness, as opposed to the actual monetary damages suffered as the result of a breach. One common type of equitable remedy used when the goods are unique is called "specific performance" – a court order requiring the nonperforming party to carry out the exact terms of the contract. For example, if your art gallery has contracted to include a painting by a well-known local artist in an upcoming exhibition but the dealer fails to deliver the painting, the court can order the dealer to produce the exact painting. Courts can also change or modify the terms of the contract to make it fairer for one or both parties or; if the contract is particularly unfair to one party, the court can rescind or cancel the entire contract and place both parties back in the positions they were before they entered the contract.

    References

    Investopedia: Equitable Relief

    Miller Law: Six Common Remedies for Breach of Contract in Business

    Writer Bio

    Trudie Longren began writing in 2008 for legal publications, including the "American Journal of Criminal Law." She has served as a classroom teacher and legal writing professor. Longren holds a bachelor's degree in international politics, a Juris Doctor and an LL.M. in human rights. She also speaks Spanish and French.

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