Contracts are important in almost every aspect of business. They keep businesses running, set rules and define relationships. When contract disputes arise they can derail a business and its plans. Poorly written or confusing contracts can often be to blame for contract litigation. When terms are not clearly defined, people can misinterpret expectations, which can lead to trouble.
One New Jersey development has been completely put on hold recently because of a contract dispute. The developer, Partners Development, was in the process of building a shopping and hotel complex near Route 202/206 in Bedminster, New Jersey. Specifically, the development would include a couple of restaurants, a 50,000-square-foot grocery store, a drug store and a 120-room hotel.
This complex was supposed to be built on land owned by the state of New Jersey’s Department of Transportation. Partners Development was going to acquire the land as part of a swap for other land located in Readington, New Jersey. However, the state recently terminated the contract it had with Partners Development. The state claims that Partners Development has breached the contract.
The state alleges that under the terms of the contract, Partners Development was supposed to conduct an environmental survey, exchange site plans, present a certificate of title and get the Readington property under contract. The state says none of this has been done.
The DOT says it is still willing to work with Partners Development if the contractor can work out its contractual dispute with the state. If not, the property may be developed by another party.
In this case a property dispute may cause Partners Development to lose the property and the development opportunity. Alternative forms of dispute resolution may be helpful in this case, and those like it, so that the deal can move forward.
Source: Bridgewater Patch, “202/206 Redevelopment Plans in Bedminster on Hold,” Audrey Levine, Sept. 27, 2012