Lusk Law Maryland Lawyers

Maryland Contract Dispute Attorney

When you have a business, you depend on contracts with suppliers, contractors, and employees to ensure that things run predictably. You run into contract disputes when things change, and your contracts no longer reflect the original conditions. Contract disputes between you and your business partners cause delays in operations and disrupt your plans.

When you encounter contract disputes, you need an experienced contract dispute lawyer to help resolve the issue quickly. Our Frederick, MD, attorneys can assist you in renegotiating your contract and protecting your legal rights. Contact Lusk Law, LLC at (443) 535-9715 today.

Why Choose Us?

The attorneys at Lusk Law, LLC bring years of experience and skill to business clients facing contract disputes. All our clients receive personalized care from our talented staff. When you trust Lusk Law LLC to handle the legal aspects of your contract dispute, you will receive our full attention and unparalleled client service.

In addition to contract disputes, our legal team at Lusk Law can handle additional contract needs including:

We know how important contracts are to a business’s success. We are responsive to our clients and take your individual needs and circumstances into account when crafting legal solutions.

We are Advocates for Life’s Obstacles and Opportunities.

How We Can Help

All business relationships begin with a contract. A contract sets out the expectations between the parties. If the parties are not in agreement with one another, or if they understand the terms differently, then disputes arise.

What is a Contract?

A contract is a legally binding agreement or promise between parties. It can be written, spoken, or implied by the parties’ actions (though some contracts are valid only if written). However, if you’re accused of breaching an unwritten contract and think you’re in the clear because it wasn’t formalized or signed, you may be wrong – it depends on the specific facts in the contract.

A binding contract must have:

  • Offer: An offer is a promise to do something in exchange for something else. The offer must be communicated to the other party. 
  • Acceptance: The other party assents to the terms of the offer. If the other party does not agree, there is no contract. If the other party makes a different offer for the same thing, it is called a “counteroffer.”
  • Consideration: There must be an exchange of something of value. The thing of value does not need to be “valuable” in a monetary sense, but it must be of value to the parties.
  • Performance: The parties fulfill their contractual obligations. 

In Maryland, both parties must be over 18 and mentally competent to enter into a contract. If one party is under 18, that person cannot be required to honor the agreement in court.

When You Need a Contract Dispute Attorney

Contract disputes arise when there is no “meeting of the minds,” that is when the parties sign a contract and later find themselves disagreeing about how the contract should be executed. A contract dispute lawyer can help the parties in cases where there have been: 

Breach of Contract

A breach of contract happens if one party doesn’t sufficiently live up to their end of the bargain. This can be a failure, a refusal to perform, or one party making it impossible for the other party to perform.

Failure to Perform occurs when one party is supposed to perform at a certain time or in a certain way and does not do so.

Refusal to Perform occurs when a party can carry out its contractual duties and chooses not to.

Impossibility occurs when one party creates conditions so the other party cannot perform its contractual duties. Impossibility can also be due to natural disasters or supply-chain issues.

Breach of contract disputes typically comes down to claims of substantial performance vs. material breach:

Substantial performance means that the non-performing party has carried out most of the contractual requirements but not all. This may be sufficient to discharge their legal obligations. Although they are still in breach of contract, the breach is minor and can be resolved by the non-performing party.

Material breach means that the non-performing party has failed to fulfill most or all its obligations. The question becomes whether the cause of the breach is in good faith and whether the other party is able and willing to fulfill their own obligations on the contract.

Early Termination and Specific Performance

You may have, in good faith, negotiated and entered a contract. It meets all the legal requirements and is enforceable. The other party, for whatever reason, has second thoughts and asks that the agreement be voided or substantially changed.

A well-thought-out contract involving businesses should have language describing when and how it may be terminated. It should contain an early termination clause specifying what type of notice must be given and the penalties for early termination. There should also be language spelling out how the parties can negotiate rescinding or rewriting the contract.

If a party needs to renegotiate the contract, you should contact a contract dispute lawyer. If discussions with an attorney do not result in a new agreement, the non-breaching party can go to court to ask a judge to intervene.

A judge may order specific performance; that is, the breaching party may be ordered to comply with the contract terms. This cannot be done for service contracts. In that case, the judge may order the breaching party to pay the value of the services under the contract.

An experienced contract lawyer not only can help craft well-drafted contracts but also review your existing contracts. If you need to pursue litigation, our contract dispute lawyers at Lusk Law have extensive experience taking clients’ cases to court.

Our team can help you at any stage of your contract dispute. Call us today for help at (443) 535-9715.

Writing the Perfect Contract

There are costs and benefits to distinct types of contracts.

A contract can be detailed and go on for pages about the parties’ rights and responsibilities. This can lengthen the process of completing and accepting it. It may also scare away potential parties who don’t want to spend the time, energy, and money to negotiate a highly complex agreement.

A broader and less detailed contract could be shorter and less complex. But it also leaves more open to interpretation and creates possible disagreements over what the two parties agreed upon.

The contract law team at Lusk Law, LLC helps businesses confront legal challenges. We are prepared to litigate in court when you need strong representation.

Unrealistic Deadlines, High Prices

If a contract states that work must be done or supplies delivered by given dates at set prices, there are bound to be problems over time. Both parties assume the prices and dates are realistic; but that may not be the case in our post-pandemic economy of rising costs and disrupted supply chains. Ideally, a contract should contain language about how dates can change and the process for changing prices when necessary.

The parties need to negotiate in good faith. One party can’t agree to a lower price just so they can force a higher price upon the other party later. The party receiving the goods or services must act in good faith if the other party is honestly doing all it can to meet its responsibilities. A party need not perform obligations if it’s impossible or impractical.

Contact a Frederick, MD, Contract Dispute Lawyer Today

If there’s a dispute that you and the other party can’t resolve, we can help. We can be a fresh set of eyes on the problem and suggest a way to resolve disputes through negotiation.

The dispute may also require mediation or arbitration. Mediation involves a neutral third party (a mediator) who will work with both sides to reach a resolution. An arbitrator acts as a judge in a private litigation process to produce an outcome. If your contract contains mediation or arbitration language, you may need to go to mediation before you can file a lawsuit.

You can prevent many contract disputes by having our office create or review every contract you sign. Online contract templates are too vague; they won’t meet your specific needs, nor will they adequately protect your business. Even the best-worded contracts will not prevent all disagreements, so our contract dispute attorneys are here to help you address whatever issues arise.

If you need help with a contract, contact the business attorneys at Lusk Law, LLC – either online or at (443) 535-9715.

We’re Advocates for Life’s Obstacles and Opportunities.

Attorney Rebekah Damen Lusk

Rebekah Damen Lusk is the Founder and Managing Member of Lusk Law, LLC. Rebekah brings personal experiences as a small business owner, real estate investor, landlord, and farm owner to the task of practicing law and working with clients. Her practice areas include general civil litigation, business, employment, landlord/tenant, real estate, and equine/animal law. [ Attorney Bio ]