1 cast off or disown; "She renounced her husband"; "The parents repudiated their son" [syn: renounce]
2 refuse to acknowledge, ratify, or recognize as valid; "The woman repudiated the divorce settlement"
3 refuse to recognize or pay; "repudiate a debt"
4 reject as untrue, unfounded, or unjust; "She repudiated the accusations"
EtymologyFrom repudio < repudium
QuotationsJoyce Carol Oates: "Chaucer . . . not only came to doubt the worth of his extraordinary body of work, but repudiated it"
to reject the truth of, deny, or disown
- Dutch: ontkennen
- Polish: odrzuciić
- Spanish: repudiar, negar, renegar, rechazar
to refuse to have anything to do with
- Polish: wyrzec się
- Spanish: repudiar, desconocer
Anticipatory repudiation (or anticipatory breach) is a term in the law of contracts that describes a declaration by one party (the promising party) to a contract that they do not intend to live up to their obligations under the contract. Where such an event occurs, the other party (the performing party) to the contract is excused from having to fulfill their obligations. However, the repudiation can be retracted by the promising party so long as there has been no material change in the position of the performing party in the interim. A retraction of the repudiation restores the performer's obligation to perform on the contract.
If the promising party's repudiation makes it impossible to fulfill its promise, then retraction is not possible and no act by the promising party can restore the performing party's obligations under the contract. For example, if A promises to give B a unique sculpture in exchange for B painting A's house, but A then sells the sculpture to C before B begins the job, this act by A constitutes an anticipatory repudiation which excuses B from performing. Once the sculpture has left A's possession, there is no way that A can fulfill the promise to give the sculpture to B.
The question arises as to why any party would want to provide notice of anticipatory breach. The reason is that once the performing party is informed of the anticipatory breach, a duty is then created for the performing party to mitigate damages as a result of the breach.
Another situation where anticipatory repudiation can occur is where a party has reason to believe the other party is not going to perform and requests reasonable assurances that the other party will perform. If such reasonable assurances are not given, it will constitute anticipatory repudiation, for which the performing party has various remedies including termination.
However, anticipatory repudiation only applies to an executory bilateral contract with non-performed duties on both sides. Additionally, the repudiation must be unequivocal.
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