Specific performance means actual execution of the contract as agreed between the parties.
Specific Performance of any contract may, in the discretion of the court be enforced in the following situations
- When there exists no standard for ascertaining the actual damage caused by the non-performance of the act agreed to be done; or
- When the act agreed to be done is such that compensation in money for its non-performance would not afford adequate relief.
Exceptions: where compensation would be adequate relief are:
- Agreement by a landlord for repair of the rented premises;
- Contract for the mortgage of immovable property;
- Contract for the sale of any goods, for instance machinery or buffaloes. However, a contract to deliver rare coins would be specifically enforceable, as compensation would not constitute adequate relief in such a case;
- An agreement to pay money by installments;
- An agreement for lending money.
Besides the following:
- A contract which runs into such minute or numerous details or which is so dependent on the personal qualifications or volition of the parties, or otherwise from its nature is such, that the court cannot enforce specific performance of its material terms, cannot be specifically enforced.
- Another situation when a contract cannot be specifically enforced is where "the contract is in its nature determinable". A contract is said to be determinable, when a party to the contract can put it to an end.
- A contract the performance of which involves the performance of a continuous duty, which the Court can not supervise, cannot be specifically enforced.