Part Five Declaring rights, 25 Nominal and contemptuous damages and declarations
Andrew Burrows QC FBA
- Remedies for breach of contract — Nominal damages
This chapter discusses three remedies whose function is to declare rights: nominal damages, contemptuous damages, and declarations. Nominal damages are damages awarded for the defendant’s breach of contract or tort actionable per se, even though the claimant has not suffered any damage. Contemptuous damages are rare. They are damages of a very small amount and are concerned to indicate that, while the defendant has committed the alleged wrong, the claimant deserves no more than a technical acknowledgment of the infringement of his rights because of his own conduct in the matter. A declaration is a remedy by which a court simply pronounces on the rights or the remedies of the parties.