Remedies for breach of contract

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In the case of Breach of contract the following remedies may be sought from the court. There is a time limit within which any of these remedies must be sought, as set out in the Limitation act (1980).

Common law damages If a case of breach of contract is proved, then the plaintiff has a right to damages. The extent of the damages will be decided by the court, and often won't be as large as the defendant's claim. Two principles act to limit the award of damages.

  • Duty to mitigation. If the plaintiff could easily recover from a breach of contract (e.g., by doing business with someone else), then he has a duty to do so. The courts will not make good losses incurred by a plaintiff's failure to act sensibly.
  • Remoteness of damages. Damages will normally only be awarded for the direct effects of breach of contract. Of course, a breach can have far-reaching consequences in some cases; but it is argued that the defendant ought only to be liable to the extent of damages he could reasonably foresee.

Equitable (discretionary) remedies These are remedies that may be awarded at the discretion of the court, possibly along with damages.