Block and Scarpa is well-versed in the drafting and enforcement of contracts within the construction industry, as well as real estate, business litigation, the sports and entertainment industry and more. Each industry has its own requirements and nuances to be aware of, which makes Block and Scarpa’s extensive experience so valuable.
What is a Breach of Contract?
A breach of contract is a violation of terms within an agreed-upon contract between two parties. When one party breaches the terms of an agreement, the non-breaching party may be eligible for compensation due to damages.
Damages in construction cases can be separated into several different categories, such as defective performance, schedule-related damages, damages for failing to perform and punitive damages.
A breach of contract can be made by one or both parties and will be determined as material or non-material, depending on the nature of the breach. If you are unsure of the nature of any breach of contract, please contact one of our Vero Beach construction lawyers immediately.
Non-Material Breach of Contract in Florida
Non-material breaches of contract are typically less serious than material breaches of contract. A non-material or “minor” breach is a transgression that applies to a term of a contract being violated, but does not necessarily affect the final outcome for the contract.
For example, if a building being constructed has been designed with stone steps that are constructed of dark gray marble, but the contractor instead uses lighter gray marble without approval, this is likely a non-material breach of contract. Assuming the marble is of the same quality and value, the only issue revolves around the shade of color of the stone.
Material Breach of Contract in Florida
A material breach also is considered a total breach of contract. This involves the failure to perform crucial terms of a contract that either impedes or depreciates the value of the contract.
Returning to the previous example of marble steps, if the contractor installed limestone steps instead of marble, the breach of contract may be deemed material. Is the limestone as durable and valued to be the same quality as marble? Depending on what is determined, this may be a material breach because not only is the aesthetic determined in the contract violated, the intent of the contract (to have durable and quality steps) has been disregarded as well.
When a material breach occurs, the non-breaching party is free to exit from any contractual obligations, provided with the ability to terminate the contract immediately and can sue for any damages based on the breach.
Determining a Breach of Contract
When in a breach-of-contract dispute, it is in your best interest to find a quality, experienced contractor attorney to ensure your interests are protected. Due to the complexity of breach-of-contract claims, each must be treated as distinct and require special attention from legal counsel who is well-versed in the matters at hand.
Have you experienced a breach of contract in Vero Beach, the Treasure Coast or elsewhere in Florida? Contact the law firm of Block & Scarpa today at (772) 794-1918.