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Breach of Contracts: Most common types

Jeff Varcadipane

March 8, 2022

Anytime you enter into a legal agreement, you risk that a breach of contract will occur. Even if you and the other parties fully agree to the terms of a contract, there is always the chance that they will decide not to abide by those terms – or that they will accuse you of failing to do so. 

Contracts are legally-binding, as long as they meet the requirements under contract law. This means that you have the right to take legal action if another party commits a breach of contract. Below are different types of contract breaches that might occur. To discuss specific concerns you have about a contract, reach out to a breach of contract lawyer right away. 

Actual Breach

This is a contract breach that has already happened, meaning a party failed to meet its obligations by the required date or the party’s performance of the contract was improper or incomplete. When this occurs, the party that suffered losses can seek legal relief for the actual breach if they had a legally-enforceable contract. This might include seeking damages to compensate for losses or, in rare cases, a court order that the party performs its agreed-upon obligations. 

Anticipatory Breach

Not every contract dispute arises after a breach occurs, as some parties might indicate that it does not plan to – or cannot – perform its obligations under the agreement. Anticipatory breaches might be discovered through a direct notice from the other party that it will not fulfill its end of the bargain or based on conduct that demonstrates they do not plan to deliver. Some anticipatory breaches might be covered under force majeure clauses or similar provisions, but never assume this. Instead, discuss the matter with a skilled attorney. 

Material vs. Immaterial Breach

Unlike actual vs. anticipatory breaches, a material or minor breach refers to how the contract impacts the agreement and parties. If you receive substantially less than you should have under a contract, it is a material breach, and it can result in significant compensation to remedy the breach of contract. 

On the other hand, an immaterial breach involves a relatively minor aspect of the contract. The party might only fail to complete a small part of the agreement instead of breaching their full obligations under the contract. Sometimes, an immaterial breach results in no direct financial losses, and there might be no legal remedy available for an immaterial breach. 

Consult with a New Jersey Contract Attorney Today

No matter what type of breach occurred, you should always discuss your options with a contract lawyer. The right lawyer can assess your losses stemming from the breach and determine the best course of action. In some cases, it only requires discussion or negotiation with an attorney to induce the other party to perform the contract. It is often preferable to resolve these matters out of court. 

However, if you cannot resolve your breach of contract dispute through informal negotiation, the attorneys of Varcadipane & Pinnisi, PC, can pursue a breach of contract claim in civil court. Contact us to learn more about our civil litigation and contract services.

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