American Association of Law Libraries

A material breach is explained as a company’s incapacity to substantially perform the agreed contractual obligations. If such kind of breach is seen as non-material then the non-breaching party is suspended of its duties until such are remedied or in law terms cured. Material breach will however, give way to non-breaching party contractual obligations. An example would be a contract made between an investor and a building company. If the company does not in any way build then after the agreed time, the builder is liable for a material breach.

Compensatory, Consequential and Nominal damages The compensatory damage is the amount of monetary amount that is provided to a plaintiff in order to act as a replacement of what was lost and nothing more. In order to qualify for a compensatory damage the plaintiff must aim to provide all the necessary proof that is required to show that he/she has suffered harm that is accepted legally which can be compensated by a certain amount so determined by the judge or the jury.

An example would be the compensation made as a result of taking illegally a person’s car. Consequential damage This is the damage so realized as a result of harm that is not directly inflicted or come from the an immediate act of a second party but those that result afterwards from such acts and which can be compensated back by monetary means following a judgment made from a lawsuit. It would also refer to the detriment that comes about from the interposition of unpredictable circumstances that result in a special kind of way.

An example would be a public statement made against someone is such a manner that it denounces and tarnishes the name of that particular person. Nominal damages This kind of damage is awarded to a plaintiff who has not in any way suffered or sustained any kind of implicated or physical damage, loss or injury. It is awarded as a sign that the defendant is not permitted or allowed to perform such an act.

An example would be the cultivation of a certain plot next to your own. If the neighbor crosses the property line, does not mean that one has suffered any kind of physical injury but the nominal damage that would be awarded would certify your right to occupy the land (American Association of Law Libraries 1922).


American Association of Law Libraries, (1922). Law library journal. New York: Published by American Association of Law Libraries.