- inducing breach of contract
a form of economic tort (See economic torts) consisting in A knowingly and unjustifiably inducing B to breach his contract with C, causing loss to C. The law generally permits considerable freedom in economic matters. In the leading case of Mogul Steamship Co. Ltd v. McGregor, Gow & Co.  AC 25, the plaintiffs were put out of business by the defendants undercutting competitors by offering rebates and restricting their own agents from dealing with competitors. The necessity for a contractual relation that is being attacked was made clear in the equally important case of Allen v. Flood  AC1. The defendant must have known about a valid and subsisting contract: British Homophone v. Kunz  All ER 627; Rossleigh v. Leader Cars Ltd, 1987 SLT 355, but sometimes courts take a wider view if it seems apparent that the defendant must have known there were contracts in operation: Stratford v . Lindley  3 All ER 102. Attempts have been made to classify the kind of conduct that will legally amount to interference (the most cited being that in D. C. Thomson v . Deakin  2 All ER 361) into: (i) direct persuasion; (ii) direct intervention; (iii) indirect intervention. It may be that this tort has extended to become a tort of unlawful interference in contract that would not require the need to show a breach, but it is difficult to be certain about the precise boundaries of any of the economic torts.
Collins dictionary of law. W. J. Stewart. 2001.