A lawsuit for breach of contract is one of the most common causes of action in business. Sometimes, two parties enter into a contractual agreement, and one of them simply fails to deliver. However, it is much more common for one or both of the parties to violate terms of a contractual agreement with the hope that it will go unnoticed or that the agreement will continue despite their breach.
Louisiana Civil Code Article 1994 provides that an obligor is liable for the damages caused by his failure to perform a conventional obligation. A failure to perform results from nonperformance, defective performance, or delay in performance. Louisiana courts have consistently held that the elements of a breach of contract are:
- The obligor’s undertaking an obligation to perform
- The obligor failed to perform the obligation
- The failure to perform resulted in damages to the obligee.
Unlike some lawsuits in which a lawyer handles the case and reports back to the client, a suit for breach of contract usually involves the parties’ participation throughout the action. It is strongly advised that you retain an attorney before pursuing or defending yourself in a breach of contract action. There will be court appearances, extensive filings, and tons of communication involved in the process.
An aggrieved party may have remedies as a result of a breach including filing a lawsuit seeking specific performance or even seeking dissolution of the contract. One avenue of attaining performance in accordance with the contract is to seek an injunction. Injunctions come in stages with a hearing for a preliminary injunction before a trial to determine whether or not the injunction should continue permanently. In order to prevail in an action for breach of contract, both parties will be required to actively participate in the process.
First and foremost, these types of suits require that both parties, the obligee and obligor, be present at hearings because oftentimes they will be called on as fact witnesses to verify the elements of the claim and the timeline of the alleged breach. The first phase of the suit is the filing of the petition which must allege facts that meet the above listed requirements for a claim. Soon after that, a preliminary injunction hearing is held, which necessitates the presence of the parties in the Court’s attempt to deduce whether or not it should issue an order barring or forcing certain conduct from the parties. Attaining or defeating a preliminary injunction can be essential to your business’ success.
Suits for breach of contract require quick and effective defense and attack strategies, reliable witness testimony, and a multitude of filings with the court including substantive memoranda in support of your cause.
The attorneys at Favret, Carriere, Cronvich have a wealth of experience in this area of law and are ready to help you get your business back on track whether you are pursuing a breach of contract claim or defending one. Time is of the essence and every second counts in claims for breach of contract. Call us today in order to give yourself the best chance to succeed when dealing with a breach of contract.