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Bench or jury for breach of contract cases...

Chula Vista, CA |
Filed under: Litigation

Which is better for Defendants in breach of contract cases? Jury trial or bench trial?

Attorney Answers 3


Without knowing ANYTHING about your particular lawsuit, including the amount at stake or whether you are represented by counsel or the judge assigned to the casel, it is impossible to advise you accurately.

However, generally speaking, breach of contract cases rarely get tried before juries because jury trials are much more expensive to try, and most civil juries aren't too thrilled to be hearing such disputes.

The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice. This posting does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author (who is only admitted to practice law in the State of California). For specific advice about your particular situation, consult your own attorney.

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My colleague is absolutely right. Without knowing about the facts about the case, the claims, and the parties, there is no way anyone can answer.

You need to speak with a local litigator who has expertise in trying your type of contact case in the specific venue (where the case will be tried). If you cannot afford an attorney for full representation, at the very least retain an attorney so they can advise you on the law and procedure.

This answer is for informational purposes only and is not legal advice regarding your question and does not establish an attorney-client relationship.

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1 comment

Steven Sandler

Steven Sandler


All of the above answers are good. I would add that if you are in pro per (representing yourself), you may want to avoid a jury trial. The rules are far more complex, and the judge will be less forgiving with procedural issues. Note, however, that if either side wants a jury trial, they are entitled to it. So, even if you decide not to have a jury trial, if your opponent asks for one and pots his/her jury fees timely, you will be stuck with a jury trial.


Good answers by both my colleagues. In my experience, if the defense is very technical, one is usualy better off with a bench trial. If the defense is bases on "equity" (hard luck, impossibility of performance) then a jury would be better. Preparing jury instructions and posting of jury fees are a complexity and expense that need to be considered.

The above is general legal and business analysis. It is not "legal advise" but analysis, and different lawyers may analyse this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. I am only licensed in California. See also terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here.

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