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Contract LawText, Cases and Materials

Contract Law: Text, Cases and Materials (10th edn)

Ewan McKendrick
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date: 24 May 2024

p. 79723. Damageslocked

p. 79723. Damageslocked

  • Ewan McKendrick

Abstract

This chapter examines the entitlement of a claimant to recover damages in respect of a breach of contract committed by the defendant and is organized as follows. Section 23.2 discusses the different measures of damages that can be awarded, while 23.3 analyses the performance interest. Section 23.4 examines the circumstances in which a claimant can seek damages based on his ‘reliance’ losses rather than his performance interest, and 23.5 discusses the circumstances in which damages may be awarded to protect the claimant’s ‘restitution’ interest. Section 23.6 examines the entitlement of a claimant to recover damages in respect of non-pecuniary losses, particularly ‘mental distress’. Section 23.7 considers the general rule that damages are assessed as at the date of breach and the exceptions to that rule, while 23.8 considers the various doctrines which the courts use in order to keep liability within acceptable bounds. These include remoteness, mitigation, and contributory negligence. Section 23.9 examines the circumstances in which a claimant can recover what is known as ‘negotiating damages’ or the defendant can be ordered to account to a claimant for the profits that he has made from his breach of contract. Section 23.10 looks at the possibility that exemplary damages might play a role in breach of contract cases. The chapter concludes, in the final sections, with a discussion of agreed damages clauses (and related clauses) and their legal regulation.

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