Contracts are the lifeblood of businesses. Unfortunately, they do not always work out the way business owners plan. And, if you are facing a breach of contract lawsuit in Texas, you may wonder: How do I fight a Texas breach of contract lawsuit?
Breach of contract
To prove a breach in Texas, the plaintiff (the party who filed) must show that the contract is valid, and they performed or were ready to perform their part of the contract. Third, the defendant (the party being sued) failed to perform. Finally, the plaintiff suffered (or will suffer) damages as a result.
If you are accused of breaching a contract, you may have several defenses. First, you can challenge the validity of the contract by showing that it lacked one or more essential elements, such as offer, acceptance, consideration, capacity or legality.
For example, you can argue that there was no mutual agreement between the parties, the contract was based on fraud or mistake, you were coerced or induced into signing the contract or that the contract was illegal or against public policy.
The plaintiff breached
You can assert that the plaintiff failed to fulfil their obligations under the contract before you did, and that their breach excused your performance.
For example, you can argue that the plaintiff did not deliver the goods or services as agreed, they violated a material term of the contract or that they interfered with your ability to fulfil the contract.
The plaintiff waived
You can claim that the plaintiff voluntarily gave up their right to enforce the original terms of the contract or agreed to change them without your consent.
For example, you can argue that the plaintiff accepted late payments or partial performance from you, they agreed to extend or reduce the time for performance or that they changed the scope or quality of the work without your approval.
Performance was impossible or impracticable
You can contend that you were unable to fulfil your obligations under the contract due to circumstances beyond your control.
For example, you can argue that an act of god, such as a natural disaster, war or pandemic, prevented you from fulfilling the contract, or that a change in law or regulation made performance illegal or impracticable.
You can dispute the amount or the existence of damages. For example, you can argue that the plaintiff did not incur any actual losses, they failed to mitigate their damages by taking reasonable steps to reduce them or that they are seeking excessive or speculative damages that are not supported by evidence.