COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and Commercial Contracts: Extracting Yourself from Deals that No Longer Work
Most commercial contracts are predicated on the wheels of the economy turning normally. What happens to that contract when those wheels slow down or grind to a halt?
The starting point is to go looking for a force majeure clause and examine it carefully to see if it can help your client. I say carefully because, if you rely on it to stop performing the contract and you are wrong, you will have repudiated the contract and you can be sued for damages.
But there is another approach which goes beyond the express terms of the contract itself and that is the doctrine of frustration. Is the contract at an end because the external circumstances are such that it is impossible for the contract to be performed? If so, you have another way out.
Peter Mills, Special Counsel at Thynne & McCartney in Brisbane, provides an overview in this short podcast.
You can also register for a one hour webinar to be presenter by Peter Mills to be presented on 21 April or you can purchase a recorded version if you can’t attend the live event.