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Trailers on a movie set are a star's home away from home, and celebrities spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to ensure that they are as comfortable in between filming as possible. Twilight star Taylor Lautner is no exception. The 19 year-old tween heartthrob spent close to $300,000 on his custom-designed trailer, hoping to have it in place during the filming of his latest movie, Abduction.
When Taylor's trailer did not arrived on the scheduled delivery date, he became very distressed. Emotionally distressed, that is. He is now suing the Irvine-based McMahon RV company for breach of contract damages stemming from the delay. Yahoo News reports that Lautner has filed suit alleging breach of contract, fraud, and unspecified punitive damages for the delayed delivery. No news on what exactly was in the custom trailer, but the complaint alleges that Lautner has experienced, "displeasure, annoyance, and emotional distress."
Hmmmm, punitive damages for failing to deliver a trailer on time? He may have a hard time proving that one as this class of damages is rarely recoverable for a breach of contract case, and used when the court feels it is necessary to punish the defendant for offensive behavior. Since missing a deadline to deliver a trailer is purely contractual, awarding the teenager punitive damages for this case is highly unlikely.
Although distressing, when there is a breach of contract of this nature, the court will usually look to the damage that has been caused by the delay in the delivery. Taylor would need to show that the delay was a material to the contract, and he has damages stemming from the breach (such as having to stay in the Ritz Carlton instead of his trailer). If the need for the trailer on a certain date was not properly communicated to the RV company, or within the sales contract, a court may see the delay as immaterial, and Taylor would not be able to recover any damages. Either way, it will be interesting to see what is so special about this trailer when it does get delivered!
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