Miami Business Law: Is it Ever Acceptable to Breach a Contract?

You signed a contract with another business or with an individual. But things changed, and now you’re unhappy with the arrangement. But it’s a contract, so you’re stuck with it… right?

Much of time, you’re right. (That’s why it’s important to be very careful what you sign in the first place!) But depending on the circumstances, you may actually have legal methods of invalidating the contract. Today, we’re going to cover four of these methods. Please note that these may or may not be applicable to you, so give us a call to discuss your specific situation.

1. The contract itself was invalid. For a valid contract to exist, there must have been an offer and acceptance, the parties must have intended to be bound by the contract, and an exchange of goods or services needs to have been made or promised (consideration). If any of these elements are missing, the contract can’t be enforced because a valid contract never existed.

2. The contract was fraudulent. When one party has misrepresented material facts, the contract may be considered fraudulent. The party wishing to breach the contract must prove that the other party knowingly misrepresented the facts. Sometimes, withholding information is considered fraudulent. We can help you determine whether this applies to your situation.

3. The contract was signed under duress. If one party was influenced to sign the contract under pressure, the contract may be voided. Both parties must sign the contract of their own free will for the contract to be valid. There is a similar category, undue influence, when a party is a position of power (usually a fiduciary) exerts excessive pressure to induce a weaker party to sign a contract. This type of contract can also be invalid.

4. Changes in circumstances make it impossible to execute the contract. Many times when a change in circumstances makes fulfilling the contract difficult, but not impossible, the contract must be completed. But in some cases the contract no longer needs to be fulfilled. We can provide advice on whether changing circumstances make it possible to legally breach the contract.

Most of the time, if you’ve signed a contract, you are legally bound by its terms. But in certain circumstances, there are exceptions. If you’re stuck in an undesirable contract, we may be able to help you legally invalidate it.  Please contact us with any specific questions today.

DISCLAIMER – The contents of this blog are general and not to be taken as advice or instructions. Every business is different, and the above might not be applicable to your situation.  Before taking action that could have legal ramifications, contact the Trembly Law Firm.

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Written by Brett Trembly

Brett Trembly

In the South Florida legal community, Brett sits on the Board of the South Miami Kendall Bar Association, the Florida Bar 11th Circuit Grievance Committee, volunteers on the Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division Mentoring Program, the Dade-County Bar Associations Rainmakers Committee, and annually volunteers for Miami-Dade County’s Ethical Governance Day.

Comments

  1. Excellent first edition, Brett. Keep up the good work!