Fundamental breach of contract
A breach of contract that destroys the whole point of the contract.
Case example: Photo Productions v Securicor (1980)
A security guard supplied by the defendants accidentally burnt down the factory he was supposed to be safeguarding. This was held to be a fundamental breach of contract.
It is possible for a party to the contract to exclude liability for a fundamental breach of the contract by including an exclusion clause in the contract.
The courts will uphold this as long it is reasonable (Unfair Contract Terms Act 1977) taking into account things like equality of bargaining power. The wording of the exclusion clause must be very clear and unambiguous so that the other party understands what he is agreeing to.