Order of specific performance

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Specific performance is a court order requiring that a party in breach of contract perform his positive obligations under the contract. Specific performance will only be granted where damages would not be an adequate remedy (Adderley v Dixon 1824) and is more likely to be awarded where the property is unique. In contracts for the sale of goods, specific performance may be ordered if the property is of unusual beauty, rarity or distinction and cannot be bought on the open market (Falcke v Gray 1859).

In contracts for services, the legal test for whether specific performance is available is whether the losses could be quantified if the service was not provided. Contracts of employment cannot be enforced by specific performance per section 236 Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992. In relation to other contracts for services, specific performance may be refused if constant performance would be required, if enforcing the contract would amount to slavery or it would lead to imperfections in performance.

Contract Law