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4 possible defenses against breach of contract

On Behalf of | Oct 29, 2022 | Business Litigation |

Every case is unique and it helps to know some of the legal options before getting into a complex business litigation.

California Civil Code outlines several of the common defenses against breach of contract. Review them to consider which may be a good fit.


If one party confined or intimidated another party, or inappropriately influenced a family member of someone entering into a deal, the contract may be void. A person cannot breach what was never rightly agreed upon. It also may happen that someone signs a contract that is unfavorable simply because they hope it will temporarily fix a financial problem for them. This is also duress.

Menace or Injury

If one party harms another during the course of negotiations, the contract may be invalid. This relates to both physical harm and harm to the person’s character or status.


If anyone told a knowing lie during the course of the business agreement, or if anyone intentionally concealed a fact that would have been helpful to the other party, this constitutes fraud. Any act intended to deceive runs the risk of rendering the contract unenforceable.


Perhaps someone in the organization received incomplete information or misunderstood the facts of the contract before they signed it. This kind of mistake is sometimes attributed to garden variety miscommunication. It may also be possible that both parties in the contract were mistaken to such a degree that it nullifies the contract and makes a breach claim impossible.

If any part of the deal felt less than “above board” you are within your rights to question whether the contract was valid from start.


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