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Ask Ely Your Own Question
Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 102601
Experience:  Qualified attorney in private practice including business, family, criminal, and real estate issues.
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What is the legal recourse who breaks a contract

Customer Question

what is the legal recourse for someone who breaks a contract to close a real estate deal
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Ely replied 2 years ago.
Hello and welcome to JustAnswer. Please note:
(A) This is general information and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein. No attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. This is repeated in numerous disclaimers throughout the site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms; and (B) there may be a slight delay between your follow ups and my reply while I am typing out my answer.
That depends. Can you please tell me:
1) Who broke the contract - seller or buyer?
2) Why?
3) Was any earnest money paid?
4) Does the contract state anything about what is to happen in such a situation, or not?
This is not an answer, but an Information Request. I need this information to answer your question. Please reply, so I can answer your question. Thank you in advance.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
buyer broke contract. no earnest money paid and contract does not state what would happen
Expert:  Ely replied 2 years ago.
Thank you.
Then, the owner has the right to file a breach of contract claim. The basic elements of a breach of contract case under Tennessee law must include (1) the existence of a contract, (2) breach of the contract, and (3) damages which flow from the breach. The plaintiff's performance under the contract is not an element of his claim, but rather an affirmative defense. Life Care Centers of America, Inc. v. Charles Town Associates Ltd. Partnership, 79 F.3d 496, 514 (6th Cir. 1996) (applying Tennessee law).
The owner may also ask the Court for specific performance in the case, i.e. forcing the would-be buyer to actually go through with the purchase.
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