Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law

School of Law

Contact Details

Dr David Pearce


Before becoming an academic, I practised as a solicitor at a London firm where I undertook a broad range of commercial work.

From practice, I went to the University of Exeter to read for a PhD. In my thesis I explored the extent to which English law recognises a duty to perform a contract and the scope of liability which arises when that duty is breached.


Research Interests

My written work focuses on the nature and scope of contractual rights and remedies, and their relationship with proprietary rights and remedies.


I currently teach Contract and Tort.

PhD Supervision

I would be happy to supervise suitable students who intend to study aspects of the English law of obligations.

Key Publications

Journal articles

  • Pearce D, ‘Of Ceilings and Flaws: An Analytical Approach to the Minimum Performance Rule in Contract Damages’, Oxford Journal of Legal Studies 2015
    DOI: 10.1093/ojls/gqw005, Repository URL: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/93460/

    The minimum performance rule applies where the defendant who has repudiated his contract would have had a choice as to how to perform it. The rule requires that damages be assessed on the basis that the defendant would have chosen to perform in the least onerous manner. Two principal criticisms of the rule are made. The first is that the rule's fundamental assumption, that minimum performance is all the claimant is entitled to, rests on a flawed understanding of what it means to have a choice as to how to perform a promise. The second concerns the rule's application to consequential loss. Where the benefit of which the claimant has been deprived comprises consequential, as opposed to immediate, loss the absence of an entitlement to that benefit is not a bar to recovery, liability being limited by the doctrine of remoteness instead. The article then considers whether the rule has a continuing role in contract law. Given that those cases within its remaining area of application, being claims for the recovery of contractual benefits as to which the defendant made no promise, are not, properly considered, minimum performance cases at all, the conclusion reached is that the rule should be abandoned.

  • Pearce D, Halson DR, ‘Damages for Breach of Contract: Compensation, Restitution, and Vindication’, Oxford Journal of Legal Studies, 28 (2008), 73-98

  • Pearce D, ‘Remedies for Breach of a Keep-Open Covenant’, Journal of Contract Law, 24 (2008), 199-225

  • Honeyball SE, Pearce D, ‘Contract, Employment and the Contract of Employment’, Industrial Law Journal, 35.1 (2006), 30-55
    DOI: 10.1093/indlaw/dwj002


  • Pearce D, ‘Property and contract: where are we?’, in New Perspectives on Property Law, Obligations and Restitution, ed. by Hudson A (Cavendish, 2004), 87-116

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