Claim for breach of contract in Israel – how to win?

Claim for breach of contract

A claim for breach of contract can be filed when it is a breach of a written contract or a breach of an oral contract, and in these cases it is possible to demand contract enforcement or contract cancellation, plus financial compensation (you can never demand contract enforcement and contract cancellation together, but there is no obstacle to demand financial compensation in either case ).

Before filing a claim for breach of contract

It is important to remember that it is always easy to file a lawsuit, but it is not always easy and simple to convince the court to accept your claims. Therefore, it is always advisable to do "preparatory work" before submitting the lawsuit to the court in order to have enough data to show that your claims regarding breach of contract are indeed true.

This preparatory work may prevent a situation where you will have to ask to amend the statement of claim during the procedure (something that may cost you quite a bit of money, in the form of court costs, and quite a bit of time).

Is it an oral contract or a written contract?

Before filing a claim for breach of contract, you should examine whether it is a breach of an oral contract or a breach of a written contract?

As far as you didn't know, a contract can also be made orally (except in relation to real estate transactions), and it is a binding contract. The difficulty in lawsuits for breach of an oral contract is to prove that such a contract was indeed concluded, under the same conditions claimed by the plaintiff, therefore before filing a claim for breach of an oral contract it is advisable to check if you have a recording of the conversation of the oral contract being concluded or witnesses who were present at that stage who could testify for your benefit

To the extent that there were witnesses with you who were present at the conclusion of the contract, you should check before filing the lawsuit what exactly they remember from that situation. To the extent that they remember the things in a way that matches your claims, you should consider having them sign an affidavit even before filing the claim or at least record them, since a claim can last a long time, and many months (or even more) may pass by the time the witnesses testify, which may make them forget essential details. If the witnesses forget essential details, this will certainly not help you convince the judge that you are right.

As you consider filing a claim for breach of a written contract, make sure you have a complete and legible copy of the agreement. It is clear that if you do not have a legible and complete copy of the agreement (all pages), it is possible that your claim will be rejected on the grounds that you acted in bad faith and tried to hide essential details.

Attorney Eddie Blitstein
Contract attorney Eddie Blitshtein explains about a claim for breach of contract

Before filing a claim for breach of contract, you should make sure that you are not basing yourself on a clause in the contract that is subject to interpretation. If the section you claim was violated is subject to interpretation, this may be a significant difficulty when conducting the claim. In these situations in particular, it is advisable to send a warning letter before taking legal proceedings (as will be detailed below).

Also, it is important to read the contract before filing a claim for breach of contract, and make sure that there is indeed at least one clause that was violated by the other party. The more central a clause is in the contract, the better the chances of the claim being accepted.

For example: there is a difference between a situation where it is a violation due to late payment by one day and non-payment at all. In the first situation, the chance that the court will award significant financial compensation in your favor, as long as you fail to prove that you suffered significant damage due to a delay in payment by one day, is zero.

On the other hand, a claim for breach of contract in a situation where one of the parties to the contract did not pay at all for a service or product that he actually received, has a much higher chance of being accepted.

Claim for breach of contract
Claim for breach of contract

Before you want to file a claim for breach of contract – send a warning letter

As you probably understand, filing a lawsuit involves significant costs for the plaintiff. For example; You have to pay a court fee, lawyer's fees , costs of summoning witnesses (as much as you need) and it is very possible that there will be additional expenses throughout the procedure that the plaintiff will have to bear.

In order to save these costs, it would be correct from the point of view of the potential claimant to send a warning letter in which he would specify to the opposing party exactly which clauses in the agreement were violated and what remedy he requires (contract cancellation, contract enforcement, financial compensation, or a combination of some remedies).

It is possible that the opposing party will ignore the warning letter, but in such a situation you can raise a legal claim in court that the detailed information in the defense letter is in the nature of claims .

It is also possible that the opposing party will respond to your letter and present you with claims that you were not aware of. In a situation where you have more information relating to the defendant's possible defense claims, you will be able to formulate a claim for breach of contract in a smarter and more correct way.

There may be a situation where the defendant will present you with data according to which he did not violate the contract at all. As long as the data is correct, the warning letter actually saved you from filing a claim that would have achieved nothing, and maybe even rejected and the judge would have charged you with court costs.

Filing a claim for breach of contract

Whenever you file a claim for breach of contract with the Magistrate's Court or the District Court, you must be careful to draft the statement of claim in accordance with the Civil Procedure Regulations , 2018 . The relevant case law, which may convince the court to rule in your favor, based on similar precedents.

When filing a lawsuit for breach of contract, a copy of the contract itself (in a legible and complete copy) must be attached to the lawsuit. It is necessary to specify in the statement of claim which clauses in the contract were violated so that the judge does not have to "guess" what exactly you mean (a matter that may certainly lead to the rejection of your claim).

Also, you should attach the warning letter you sent before filing a claim and the answer you received (as many as you received) to the claim.

To the extent that you have additional data that indicates that the defendant has indeed violated the agreement, you should consider attaching them to the statement of claim. It should be remembered that the statement of claim in the Magistrate's or District Court (as part of a claim in ordinary law) does not include all the evidence you have, but only the most essential documents. The stage of joining and submitting the evidence is a later stage and occurs with the submission of the main witness affidavit .

The stage of presenting the evidence is a very important stage for the purpose of convincing the judge of the validity of your claims. All that preparatory work you did before filing a claim for breach of contract can pay off especially at this stage. Those witnesses or recordings you prepared before filing the lawsuit can be especially helpful at this stage.

As long as you do not have witnesses or recordings, at the stage of submitting the evidence you must attach any data or document that supports your claim that the contract was indeed violated by the defendant. If you do not submit all the evidence at the stage of submitting the initial testimony affidavits, you may not be able to use them later, and it is likely that you will have to submit a request to add evidence .

Even if the court grants your request to add evidence, it is likely that it will charge you court costs for the deliberative default (usually at least thousands of shekels).

Claim for breach of contract
Signing the contract and filing a claim for breach of contract

In conclusion

A claim for breach of contract must be based on a contract that was signed between the parties, and that one of the parties violated one of its clauses. The violation can be fundamental (serious violation) or not fundamental (minor violation). In each case, the procedure before filing a claim for breach of contract will be different.

Before filing a claim for breach of contract, a warning letter can be sent, but such a letter is not always necessary. Sometimes the breach of contract is so serious that there is no other choice but to file a claim immediately, and there is no time to waste on warning letters.

Going to court alleging a breach of contract is no small thing, and one must be prepared to present evidence of the breach of contract by the opposing party. The same evidence can be witnesses, correspondence, recorded conversations, bank account statements, etc. If you do not have evidence of a breach of contract it may be difficult to file a claim for breach of contract, so it is always a good idea to consult with an experienced contract law attorney.

Attorney Eddie Blitstein
Need legal representation for a claim for breach of contract? Contact attorney Eddie Blitshtein

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Attorney Eddie Blitshtein

Attorney Eddie Blitshtein is engaged in representing the interests of plaintiffs and defendants in complex court proceedings over a decade.

Attorney Eddie Blitshtein has vast experience and proven success in courts.

You can read multiple recommendations from previous clients and publications in the Israeli media about the cases we handled at the bottom of the page.

Attorney Eddie Blitshtein is fluent in Hebrew, English and Russian languages

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