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Abstract

It is commonly held that if getting a contractual remedy was costless and fully compensatory, rescission followed by restitution would not exist as a remedy for breach of contract. This claim, we will demonstrate, is not correct. Rescission and restitution offer more than remedial convenience. Rational parties, we argue, would often desire a right of rescission followed by restitution even if damages were fully compensatory and costless to enforce. The mere presence of a threat to rescind, even if not carried out, exerts an effect on the behavior of parties. Parties can enlist this effect to increase the value of contracting.

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