An Orange County business lawyer understands that a breach of contract involves the failure to perform an agreement. Contracts may be either:
- Express; that is, things the parties expressly agree to, or
- Implied; implied either by conduct or by law.
Typically, express contracts are written. In such cases, the written terms of the agreement will be the starting point for any dispute. California law does acknowledge oral contracts as valid, in most circumstances. However, some contracts must be in writing to be enforceable.
Your attorney can explain which contracts need to be in writing, and also the difference in enforcement between written and oral contracts.
Written versus oral contracts
The primary difference is the time of enforcement, known as the statute of limitations. One must file a claim for breach of contract of a written agreement within four years. Oral contracts are subject to a two-year statute of limitations.
If both parties agree to the nature of factual evidence and what is expected of them, the terms of the contract may be enforced despite the lack of a written agreement.
Do I have any other options?
Yes, you may be able to sue in tort. The difference is that tort allows recovery for “general damages” such as pain and suffering and emotional distress. Contract damages typically limit the claimant to the “benefit of the bargain” that would have been obtained had the contract been performed.
If you have suffered a loss due to a breach of contract, it is important to understand your rights. Protect yourself by contacting the Orange County business lawyers at the Daily Aljian law firm. Call (949) 861-2524 today.