What counts as a breach of contract?
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What counts as a breach of contract?
In the last 3 months I signed a contract with Yelp advertisement. I was very much bullied into signing the contract, before signing a contract I was told there were no other options besides a year, I’ve been in contact with other local buisness owners who have used or are using the service, from them I’ve found out yelp lied about contract options and was misleading on price as well. they ranged from month-to-month 3 month and 6 month, which was what I requested in the first place, I was told no one has those types of accounts. I also found out we were all paying different prices, which I was told were fixed and non negotiable, yet one of the owners is paying nearly half what I am now. Now this month they have over charged me by 35, I requested my money back and they have not refunded me, then called me and credited me for next month but that is not what I requested, reading my contact is that a breaching our terms if the laid out a maximum and then exceeded that by a considerable amount and the misleading information of contract options as well as misleading information about website clicks and activity. I have other analytics that give other results for my website than Yelp does. when I requested information several times about just having an upgraded profile I was also told it was not possible to purchase an account without ads which one of my local business friends
is currently doing. I know I’m probably in a hole, however I’m struggling because of what this company pulled on me and I’m not sure if I have a case or not.
Asked on May 8, 2017 under Business Law, California
SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney
Answered 6 years ago | Contributor
1) Being "bullied" to sign a contract is irrelevant, unless by "bullied" you mean they used force, threats of force, or other illegal threats (e.g. blackmail): the law expects competent adults to be able to resist non-criminal pressure and holds you to what you agreed to by signing.
2) Breach of contract is violating a material (or important) term contained in the agreement or contract itself. Payment terms--e.g. how much charged you or how much paid to you--are generally considered material. A violation of such a material term can allow the non-breaching party (i.e. you) to treat the contract as terminated by the breach.
3) While being "bullied" is irrelevant, they can't lie: if they lied to you before you signed up about material (important) facts and did so to induce (or cause) you to sign up with them, that lie may constitute fraud: and fraud can provide a basis for void a contract.
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