When you begin any business dealing, you must have the contract basics in place: an offer and agreement between the two parties, and an exchange between these two sides, where both parties give something up and both gain something (a “bargained for exchange”).
But, like most things in life, even if a contract starts off on the right foot, this does not always guarantee completion and happiness for contracting parties.
What is breach of contract?
Breach of contract occurs when one party in the contract does not hold up its end of the bargain.
Just because a breach occurs, it does not make it automatically grounds for a winnable lawsuit. To prevail, you must establish damages, or prove that you have lost something in some way because of the breach.
Hypothetically, if you hire a Texas company to deliver tools for your business, and it does not deliver the tools, it causes you to be late with completion of the project. As a result, you must buy new tools. This purchase of new tools establishes part of your damages because you spent extra money.
What is the statute of limitations for civil contract breach suits?
States vary on how long they give residents to resolve their civil problems. In Texas, the time you have to file a civil lawsuit for contract violations is four years.
This means that while it is almost always a good idea to resolve your problems without a lawsuit, should you need one, you do have to mind that ticking four-year clock.