Tortious interference with contract is a legal claim that can arise when a third party intentionally interferes with a contractual relationship between two parties. In New York, there are a few key elements that must be proven in order to establish tortious interference with contract.
1. The existence of a valid contract
The first element in a tortious interference with contract claim is the existence of a valid contract between the two parties. This means that there was a clear agreement between the parties, and that both parties had the legal capacity and intention to enter into the contract.
2. Knowledge of the contract
The second key element is that the third party had knowledge of the contract. In other words, they were aware that there was an existing agreement between the two parties and intentionally interfered with it anyway.
3. Intentional interference
The third element is that the third party intentionally interfered with the contract. This means that they took some action that was intended to cause a breach of the contract or prevent its performance.
4. Actual interference
The fourth element is that the third party’s interference actually caused a breach of the contract or prevented its performance. This means that the interference was not just hypothetical – it had a real impact on the contractual relationship between the two parties.
Finally, the fifth and last element is that the interference caused damages to the plaintiff. These damages could be financial losses or other harm suffered as a result of the interference with the contract.
In order to successfully bring a claim for tortious interference with contract in New York, all of these elements must be proven. If a plaintiff is able to show that a third party intentionally and unjustly interfered with their valid contract, they may be entitled to damages to compensate for the harm caused by the interference.
It’s important to note that not every interference with a contract will rise to the level of tortious interference. Sometimes interference can be justified or even necessary to protect the interests of the third party or society as a whole. The key is to show that the interference was intentional, unjustified, and caused actual harm.
In sum, tortious interference with contract can be a complex legal issue that requires careful evaluation of the facts and evidence. If you believe that you have suffered damages as a result of a third party’s interference with your contract, it may be helpful to seek the guidance of an experienced attorney who can help you understand your legal rights and options.