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Author sues Warner Bros. for breach of production contract

Best-selling author Tess Gerritsen recently filed suit against Warner Bros. studio for an alleged breach of contract. Gerritsen wrote a book entitled "Gravity" and a unit of Warner Bros. bought the film rights to the book the same year it was published. The author is claiming that the studio breached the purchase agreement by not giving her a credit. She claims that she is entitled to a $500,000 bonus for the movie, as well as 2.5% of any resulting proceeds.

When parties agree to contract with each other, they assume certain obligations outlined in the contract. If they fail to fulfill any of these obligations, it is considered a breach of contract. A breach may consist of a failure to perform, a failure to perform on time or a failure to perform according to the terms of the contract.

If a contract is breached, the injured party can request damages, specific performance or cancellation of the contract and restitution. Damages are a payment from the breaching party to the injured party to compensate them from any losses sustained as a result of the breach. Specific performance occurs when the court orders performance of the terms of the contract. The contract may also be cancelled and the injured party can receive damages to restore them to the financial position they were in prior to the breach.

Contracting parties must abide by the terms outlined in a contract, or risk being exposed to significant liability. Any party that is damaged as a result of the breach of another contracting party may seek the assistance of a business lawyer to recoup any damages that result.

Source: Baltimore Sun, "'Gravity' author sues Warner Bros. for breach of contract," April 30, 2014

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