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Ex-Football Coach Sues University of Miami for $3 Million; Alleges Breach of Employment Contract


Al Golden is currently the linebackers coach for the NFL’s Detroit Lions. From 2011 to 2015, Mr. Golden served as the head coach for the University of Miami Hurricanes. His tenure ended on a low note — following a 58-0 loss to Clemson in the middle 2015 season, Miami athletic director Blake James dismissed Mr. Golden from the program.

However, Al Golden contends that Miami failed to pay him his full compensation. According to reporting from the Sun Sentinel, Mr. Golden alleges that the University of Miami breached his contract. He is seeking $3 million in financial damages from the program. In October, Mr. Golden filed a breach of contract lawsuit in a Miami, FL federal court.

How to Prevail in a Breach of Contract Claim in Florida 

If you are considering pursuing a breach of contract claim in Florida, you must be able to satisfy all of the required legal elements. Breach of contract claims are highly fact specific cases. It is crucial that plaintiffs are able to bring a claim backed by strong supporting evidence. The four key factors that a plaintiff must be able to prove are as follows:

  1. The Existence and Validity of the Contract: First and foremost, a plaintiff must be able to prove that they have a valid contract with the defendant. In some cases, defendants will attempt to escape liability by arguing that no binding agreement ever existed.
  2. The Plaintiff Performed their Obligations: If a plaintiff also breached an agreement, the defendant may be justified in their non performance. Plaintiffs should be prepared to prove that they lived up to their end of the bargain, or that they were excused from performance. The failure to do so could undermine the legal claim.
  3. The Defendant Materially Breach the Agreement: In the majority of contract disputes, the most important, contentious issue is the breach itself. A plaintiff must prove that the defendant violated their duties under the contract, and that their violation (their breach) was material to the agreement.
  4. The Plaintiff Suffered Real, Tangible Damage: Finally, you cannot ‘punish’ another party for breaching a contract. Courts do not view contracts as moral issues. Instead, a breach of contract claim is fundamentally an economic case. The non-breaching party may seek financial compensation or other equitable relief for real, tangible damages that they suffered as a result of the breach.

Of course, there are also defenses that are available for individuals or companies that are facing breach of contract claims. Whether you are bringing legal action or are being sued for breach of contract, it is crucial that you seek guidance from an experienced Florida contract litigation attorney.

Contact Our Florida Business Litigation Lawyers Today

At Pike & Lustig, LLP, our top-rated Florida commercial law attorneys have deep experience handling breach of contract claims. To learn more about what our legal team can do for you, please reach out to our legal team today. We have offices in West Palm Beach, Miami, and Palm Beach Gardens, and we serve individuals and businesses throughout South Florida.



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