Contract documents

Contract Breaches: Four Types of Issues

A breach of contract occurs when a party to a contractual agreement fails to abide by one or more of its terms. When a party fails to abide by its contractual obligations, the other party may file a breach of contract action in court. Contract breaches fall into one of four categories. In this article, we discuss the four types of contract breaches. 

Material Breach 

A material breach occurs when one party to an agreement receives a significantly different result or significantly less benefit than what was required by the contract. Material breaches can include failures to perform contractual obligations or failures to perform such obligations on time. When a material breach occurs, the non-breaching party may seek damages related to both the direct and indirect consequences of the breach.

Minor Breach 

Also known as a partial breach or immaterial breach, a minor breach of contract occurs when the non-breaching party receives the item or service specified in the contract, but the breaching party ultimately fails to fulfill the contract in some way. When a minor breach of contract occurs, the non-breaching party may only be able to pursue a legal remedy if the breach resulted in financial losses. For example, a late delivery may not have a remedy if the non-breaching party cannot show that the delay resulted in financial consequences. 

Anticipatory Breach 

Surprisingly, a party can be liable for breaching a contract before it fails to comply with a contract’s terms. When a party commits an anticipatory breach, an actual breach has not yet occurred, but one party has indicated to the other, either explicitly or through its actions, that it does not plan to fulfill the contract’s requirements. 

Actual Breach 

Finally, an actual breach occurs when a party has either refused to fulfill its contractual obligations by the due date or has performed its duties improperly or incompletely. 

Breach of Contract Remedies

When a party breaches a contract, there are several types of remedies available to the non-breaching party. Two common breach of contract remedies are compensatory damages and consequential damages. Compensatory damages compensate a non-breaching party for any actual losses suffered because of the contract breach. Consequential damages, on the other hand, are damages that flow indirectly from a breach of contract.

Contact a Georgia Business Litigation Lawyer 

If you are involved in a contract dispute in Georgia, you need an experienced Georgia business litigation attorney on your side. At Griffin Durham Tanner & Clarkson LLC, our experienced business litigation attorneys have years of experience helping our valued clients resolve their contract disputes. When you come to us for assistance, we will do everything in our power to ensure that your contract dispute has a successful outcome. Please contact us as soon as possible to schedule a free consultation with one of our knowledgeable and experienced attorneys.