The Demand Letter Timeline—How the Process Works
When a breach of contract occurs, the first step to take is to create a demand letter. But, what happens after? DoNotPay helps you draft this sensitive document and explains the demand letter timeline and associated procedures. We can even help you take the breaching party to small claims court if the situation escalates.
When dealing with a breach of contract, it is crucial to act properly and on time. Here is what the process consists of:
- Proving the elements of the breach
- Creating a breach-of-contract demand letter
- Acting in accordance with the defendant’s reply
Before creating and sending the demand letter, you must demonstrate the breach by proving specific breach-of-contract elements. They typically include:
- The existence of the contract
- Defendant’s failure to complete their obligations which caused a material breach
- Damage suffered due to the defendant’s actions
No other steps will matter much unless you have a well-written demand letter. Your options for creating one include:
- Composing the letter yourself—This option is not advised unless you have proper knowledge of the law. Demand letter templates are also tricky because they are generic and may not fit your particular case
- Hiring a lawyer to handle the task—The lawyer can take care of the task, but you will need to set aside a hefty sum for their services
- Using DoNotPay—This option will get you the required results at an affordable price
DoNotPay offers a straightforward way to create a breach-of-contract demand letter. We will generate a rock-solid legal document containing all the necessary information. You only need to:
- Sign up for DoNotPay
- Select the Client Breach of Contract product
- Answer requisite questions about the client and the agreement
- Include a payment deadline for the client before you take further legal action
- Attach photos as evidence, if you have any
You can check out the state-specific rules regarding the breach of contract in the table below:
|South Carolina||North Carolina||Florida|
Once you send the demand letter, you must wait for the defendant to react. The most common responses include:
- Admission of fault—The breaching party recognizes the fault and decides to respect the suggested solutions
- Willingness to discuss the problem over—The defendant is willing to cooperate, but they will most likely look for a way to compromise
- Ignoring the demands—The defendant can choose to ignore your demand and not respond at all. You should wait for two weeks, and send another letter
- No admission of fault—The worst-case scenario is when the violating party does admit the breach. You will need to take further legal action to prove their fault and get justice
Depending on the defendant’s reaction to the demand letter, you could wait for the settlement from a few weeks to a few months. Factors that affect the timeline include:
- How many claims the defendant party is currently dealing with
- Whether the breaching party sees the settlement request as reasonable
If you do not solve the dispute with the breaching party via the demand letter, you should take further legal action. You should file a lawsuit against the defendant to get justice. Before you do, check out the statute of limitations in your state.
A statute of limitations is a period within which you must file a lawsuit against the violating party. If you miss the set deadline, your case will be dismissed. The time frames are state-specific, and they also depend on the contract type (written or oral). Check out the details for specific states in our easy-to-follow guides:
DoNotPay is at your service for suing the defendant in small claims court. Our app, honored with the Louis M. Brown Award for Legal Access in 2020, will make sure the entire process runs smoothly. We can help you by:
- Collecting the paperwork required for the lawsuit
- Filling out the necessary court forms
- Drafting a script with solid arguments to use during the court hearing
- Submitting the complaint in your stead
We also have all the information about the defenses the violating party could use, so you know what to expect.
Once the case is settled, the court will rule a breach-of-contract remedy. Here are the possible options:
- Compensatory damages
- Specific performance
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