Substantial performance

Substantial performance

At common law, substantial performance is an alternative principle to the perfect tender rule. This principle is relevant when a contractor's performance is in some way deficient, through no willful act by the contractor, yet is so nearly equivalent that it would be unreasonable for the owner to deny the agreed upon payment. If a contractor successfully demonstrates substantial performance, the owner remains obligated to fulfill payment, less any damages suffered as a result of the deficiencies in workmanship by the contractor.

Notable cases

* "Jacob & Youngs v. Kent" 230 N.Y. 239 (1921) — The New York Court of Appeals ruled that a contracted home-builder was entitled to full payment without tearing down and rebuilding the residence, simply because within it he had installed piping equal to, though a different brand name than, that which had been agreed upon in the contract.

See also

* Contract law
* "Force majeure"
* Hardship clause
* Hell or high water clause
* Impossibility
* Mutual assent


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • substantial performance — see performance Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996. substantial performance …   Law dictionary

  • substantial performance — Performance of a contract which, while not a full performance, is performance in good faith, and in compliance with the contract except perhaps for minor and relatively unimportant deviations. 17 Am J2d Contr § 378. Performance of all the… …   Ballentine's law dictionary

  • substantial performance doctrine — A doctrine in commercial reasonableness which recognizes that the rendering of a performance which does not exactly meet the terms of the agreement (slight deviation) will be looked upon as fulfillment of the obligation, less the damages which… …   Black's law dictionary

  • substantial performance doctrine — The principle that where there has been a breach of one of several promises, the question whether there has been a failure of consideration, a complete failure or a partial failure, is determined according to whether or not there has been a… …   Ballentine's law dictionary

  • performance — per·for·mance n 1: work done in employment unsatisfactory performance 2 a: what is required to be performed in fulfillment of a contract, promise, or obligation substituted a new performance in novation of the contract b: the fulfillment of a… …   Law dictionary

  • substantial compliance — n: compliance with the substantial or essential requirements of something (as a statute or contract) that satisfies its purpose or objective even though its formal requirements are not complied with Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam… …   Law dictionary

  • substantial — sub·stan·tial /səb stan chəl/ adj 1 a: of or relating to substance b: not illusory: having merit failed to raise a substantial constitutional claim c: having importance or significance: material …   Law dictionary

  • performance — The fulfillment or accomplishment of a promise, contract, or other obligation according to its terms, relieving such person of all further obligation or liability thereunder. See also execute execution part performance payment; substantial… …   Black's law dictionary

  • substantial compliance rule — Compliance with the essential requirements, whether of a contract or of a statute. Wentworth v. Medellin, Tex.Civ.App., 529 S.W.2d 125, 128. In life insurance law is that where insured has done substantially all he is required to do under policy… …   Black's law dictionary

  • substantial compliance — See substantial performance …   Ballentine's law dictionary

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