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What is tortious interference with a contract?

On Behalf of | Jan 5, 2023 | Breach Of Contract

Business competition can get nasty.  Sharp-elbow business practices can cross the line and become illegal.  You may have heard of the tort of tortious interference with a contract.  When this occurs, a company intentionally interferes in the affairs of a rival company to steal its business relationships.  Its actions are meant to encourage a breach of contract between another company and a third party.

Example of Tortious Interference

Let’s say your company manufactures medical devices and has a contract with a regional health care system that oversees a network of hospitals, clinics and pharmacies. Separately, the regional health care system has a contract with another firm, ABC Company.  ABC Company has long intended to branch out into medical devices with an ultimate plan to eliminate the competition – your company. ABC Company resorts to an unscrupulous tactic: threatening to end business relations with the regional health care system unless the latter drops its contract with your company.

Do you have a case?

If something like that has happened to you, you may have a cause of action for tortious interference.  Here is what your lawyer will have to prove:

  • You had an existing contract.
  • The meddling company – the defendant – had previous knowledge of your contract with the third party.
  • The defendant intentionally interfered, knowing that its actions would harm your business and lead to a broken contract.
  • The defendant intended to interfere with your contract.
  • A breach of contract occurred due to the defendant’s actions.
  • Your company suffered damages as a result of this broken contract.

When these factors come into play, you and your company have a claim for tortious interference.

If you have suffered this sort of harm, reach out to us and we can visit about how you can make it right.