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Superior Court Explains When a Contract Claim Is Not A Tort

Cornell Glasgow LLC v. La Grange Properties LLC,  C.A. N11C-05-016 JRS CCLD (June 6, 2012)

Parties often try to plead as many different legal theories as possible.  Pleading tort claims is particularly popular because there is a sense that  it may lead to bigger damages and sounds aggressive.  After all, who wants to be a "tortfeasor?"  This careful decision explains when there is a tort claim and when there is not when the dispute arises out of a contractual relationship.

Briefly, after the contract has been at least partially performed, it is not a tort to promise to continue performance even if you do not mean to do so.  Instead, that is just a breach of the contract. Therefore, there is no claim in such circumstances for fraudulent inducement. Also, when the damages arising out of the breach are not different than the damages recoverable in tort, there is no tort claim either.

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