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Contractual dispute with Michigan landowners ends up in court

Contracts are pretty commonplace this day and age. People are free to make contracts amongst themselves as long as they are legal and the parties entering into the contractual relationship are doing so freely and of their own accord. Illegal contracts are void and cannot be enforced by a court of law. So when a contractual relationship exists between the parties, each party is responsible for their part of the contract. For instance, if a contract for services comes into being, then the party providing the services has to do so and the party paying for the services must pay once services have been rendered. This is an example of a contractual relationship.

Landowners in Michigan are seeking court assistance in a case where they believed that they were duped. Public lands were auctioned off for drilling purposes. Afterwards, a number of companies approached several Michigan landowners about drilling for oil and natural gas on their land and signed leases with the landowners in order to do so. Many landowners were promised compensation but never received any form of payment regarding this matter. The companies that wanted to drill soon discovered that the land was not as vibrant with oil and natural gas as they thought and as such did not live up to their end of the bargain as far as paying the landowners was concerned. This action by the companies violated a contractual agreement between them and the owners of the land.

The courts tend to get involved in contract cases when invited. There are many contract disputes that never see the inside of a courtroom because the parties can come to some type of agreement. For those cases that cannot be resolved amicably like the abovementioned case, court intervention is inevitable. A court will look at the relationship between the parties and determine whether or not a contractual relationship existed based on the nature and circumstances surrounding the case.

Contract disputes can become very complicated which is why an understanding of contract law is important.

Source: Michigan Radio, "Michigan landowners say they were cheated, energy company disagrees, court to decide ," Rebecca Williams, Sep. 11, 2014

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