Northern Virginia Contract Disputes
Businesses rely on contracts to outline expectations and ensure that all parties fulfill their duties. These contracts can be either written or oral agreements. Unfortunately, contract disputes arise from time to time. The other side might refuse to adhere to the contract, forcing you to pursue litigation. Also, the other party might accuse you of breach of contract, even if their claim is baseless. PJI Law can help you settle contract disputes in Northern Virginia, and if that fails, help you pursue court action. Our seasoned legal team helps both individuals and businesses and can represent you in your case.
Our Northern Virginia contract dispute attorneys have helped people and businesses settle disagreements both inside and outside of the courtroom. Contact us today to discuss your case so we can formulate a legal strategy.
Establishing Breach of Contract
There are typically three components involved in successful breach of contract claims. You must have:
Possible Damages in Breach of Contract Cases
If you sue another party for breach of contract, you can pursue damages. You might be eligible to collect compensatory and consequential damages if you lost money due to a breach of contract. If you have a liquidated damages clause in the contract, you may also be able to recover compensation that way. This clause goes into effect if you cannot define the actual losses you suffered due to the breach of contract. Some people think they can collect liquidated damages without going to court as long as the clause is in effect. However, you have to prove that the other party breached the contract and jump other hurdles to collect the damages.
You can also pursue equitable relief for your claim. Often, this comes in the form of the judge ordering the defendant to uphold the contract. Equitable relief is granted when compensation is not enough to fix the issue.
Defenses in Breach of Contract Disputes
Breach of contract cases are relatively complicated, in part because of the numerous defense options. The other party might state that the claimant was the first to breach the contract. The defendant can also state that the other party abandoned the right to enforce the document by waiving the breach.
Also, the defendant can claim that the contract wasn’t legally valid, or the plaintiff committed fraud. It’s even possible to argue that the plaintiff took advantage of the defendant when creating the contract. Your Northern Virginia contract dispute attorney can present evidence to either support your defense or refute the defense’s claim.
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Do All Cases Go to Court?
There is a myth that all contract disputes end up in civil court. However, to save you money, time, stress, and uncertainty, your contract disputes attorney from PJI Law can attempt to settle the claim outside of court. For example, the other side might agree to pay a smaller amount of damages so that they too avoid the expense and stress of litigation. During the negotiation process, your attorney will prepare to contest the case if necessary. Then, if a resolution isn’t possible, your attorney will file the paperwork and take the case to court.
Statute of Limitations
Of course there are exceptions to every rule, but generally you might have five years from the date of the breach of a written contract to file a lawsuit, and three years from the breach of an oral contract. Keep in mind that the clock starts ticking from the date of the first violation. For example, assume that a subcontractor overcharges your company, clearly breaching the contract. You dispute it but continue to pay. You do this for six years and then sue for breach of contract. Case law shows that the judge may decide to check the date of the first breach and use it to determine if the statute of limitations has passed. Thus, you should act as soon as you identify any breach.
Awards and Recognition
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