What are our options for breach of contract?

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What are our options for breach of contract?

Our catering company was hired by a client to provide food and service for 200 people. On the day

of the event, our shipping company provided us the incorrect order for china dinnerware. It was in our

contract to provide china and staff but only 5 of the 12 showed up. We provided disposables and all food items that were ordered. The client has requested a full refund that we believe to be unfair. What are our options, if any? We have already refunded $1800 of the $2400 paid to us.

Asked on December 7, 2017 under Business Law, Arizona

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Based on what you write, you breached the contract. The client could have declined to accept your service entirely and gotten all their money, including their deposit back, but that's evidently not what they did. Instead, they accept the partial services and/or substitutes you provided. Having accepted that, they have to pay for it (the law does not allow them to be "unjustly enriched" by taking your services, etc. but not paying the fair price for them); they are, however, due to your breach, entitled to the reasonable difference in value between what you contracted to provide and what you did in fact provide. If what you provided is worth at least $600, then they should already be fully compensated and would not be entitled to more.
You, in turn could potentially sue the shipping company and/or supplier who erred and caused you to breach your contract for the $1,800 you have to give up.


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