At Dettmann Phair Lawyers we understand that contract disputes can be stressful, whether you are an individual or business, which is why we aim to resolve contract disputes before they reach court.
What is a contract
A contract is a legally enforceable agreement made between two or more parties which arises when one party makes an offer and the other part communicates an intention to accept that offer. A contract can be written, verbal or implied from the conduct of the parties, or a mixture of the above.
What are contract disputes
Contract disputes occur when a party to a contract breaches the contractual terms of that contract. Whilst this usually arises due to non-performance according to the terms of the contract, disputes can also arise when parties interpret or understand the contract terms differently.
Contract disputes can occur in relation to a variety of agreements such as:
- Contracts for the supply of goods and services
- Contracts for the sale or purchase of land or property
- Leases and Deeds of Agreement to Lease and Lease
- Construction contracts
- Loan agreements
- Franchise agreements
- Employment agreements
How are contract disputes resolved
Before we even consider how to resolve a contract dispute, we carefully examine the contract to ascertain where a breach has occurred. If it appears that a breach has occurred, we work with our client to determine the circumstances surrounding that breach and consider a range of factors such as the following:
- Whether there is a valid contract in place
- Whether standard terms of trade apply
- If standard terms of trade are not provided, then what is relied on to establish the claim
- Whether there is an oral agreement and the effect of that oral agreement
- Whether either party claims a limitation of liability
- What actions have been taken by either party to resolve the dispute
Once we have considered the above, we can then recommend whether our client should engage in alternative dispute resolution such as negotiation, mediation and/or arbitration or in the last resort, commence proceedings. We recognise that each dispute is unique and will advise on the recourse that we know will resolve your contract dispute in the most efficient, effective and cost-effective manner.
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