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Contract Law

Contract Law

Postby woodchip35 » Thu Oct 08, 2015 8:17 am

I am a little confused about contract law and the soloution if one side fails to deliver.
As an example:
A website design and build company agree to design and build a website to a written spec and estimate within the quote a 2 week period of delivery, 50% is paid upfront.

The client advises the company on many occasions some of the design is both poor and the functioning of certain pages and in particular mobile and tablet versions are failing to work.The company fails to solve but claim all is OK.

After 2.5 months the client says enough is enough you have not delivered please return my 50%.

Company say all is done you owe us the balance, we wont now host pay us and we will send you just the files.

What are the clients options, as they will be 50% down and the need to hire a new party to totally start again....what would a claim be for 50%, the cost of the new build and damages?
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Re: Contract Law

Postby atticus » Thu Oct 08, 2015 9:20 am

The very simple answer is that in contract law the measure of damages is the amount necessary to put the innocent party in the position he would have been in had the other fully performed his obligations under the contract: Hadley v Baxendale (dls may have a lawindexpro case summary).


Taking your hypothetical example ...

Start with the terms of the contract. Were there written terms? These may affect things. There may be a limitation of liability.

Next, look at the written specification. Was that achieved? Where did it fall short? Did the specification cover the functionality of which complaint is now made?

If performance fell short, can it be put right? At what cost?

If there is a claim, it may be for the cost of a new website (if this is cheaper than putting right what has been done) less the amount unpaid. (but see point above about limitation of liability)
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Re: Contract Law

Postby woodchip35 » Thu Oct 08, 2015 10:08 am

This raises more questions

Is a detailed quotation including an estimated time period of two weeks
A contract?

Although the estimate of two weeks was given the project was cost
Quoted on the basis of two weeks
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Re: Contract Law

Postby atticus » Thu Oct 08, 2015 10:25 am

Is a detailed quotation including an estimated time period of two weeks a contract?
If accepted without qualification, yes. NB that an estimate is an estimate.
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Re: Contract Law

Postby dls » Thu Oct 08, 2015 12:35 pm

For clarity, a quotation is not a contract. The acceptance makes it one.
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