Wedding Venue cancelled wedding

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Wedding Venue cancelled wedding

I have already paid my deposit and my first payment for my wedding venue. The venue emailed me to tell me that they were no longer holding wedding venues for the summer due to chemicals being sprayed in the area. They stated that they will return pavement within 10 business days but now I have to find a new venue. Can I sue them for additional charges in finding a new venue and my existing vendors traveling fees? I am trying to find out what I’m entitled for and what I can ask for? My hotels are also already booked for my guests.

Asked on March 27, 2018 under Business Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you can potentially sue them for additional, unavoidable costs that you incur because they are breaching or voiding their contract. However:
1) If they had no fault in the chemicals being sprayed (e.g. some large agricultural company in the area not affiliated with them did this), they may not be liable for such costs (though in this case, you may be able to sue the spraying company); similarly, if they were ordered by the government (e.g. department of health) to cancel, they may not be liable. When a contract is cancelled due to physical or legal impossibility (i.e. it cannot be fulfilled either as a factual matter or legally) when the other party (the venue) is not at fault, the contract is generally voided without liability other than returning any funds already paid. If the venue had *any* role in what happened (e.g. your venue was a catering site at a winery; the winery sprayed the chemicals), they should be liable, but if this was wholly outside their control, they may not be.
2) You cannot sue for your time or inconvenience--the law doesn't provide compenstion for that--but only for actual economic costs or losses which can provably be shown to have resulted from this.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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