No business can operate without the use of contracts. Partnership agreements, Employment contracts, and agreements with third-party vendors are among the most commonly used contracts needed to define business responsibilities and specify legal remedies if agreed-upon conditions are not met.
Writing or reviewing a contract can be an intimidating process. While boilerplate language is essential for any contract, there are several key questions and components that must be considered before entering into any agreement.
What’s the intent of both parties? What’s our goal? What do we need to do? What do we hope to accomplish? This is a step often overlooked, yet essential for the parties involved. Defining the duties of each party is the second most important thing. Your attorney can work with you to define the goals and intent of the document.
When you receive a document or a contract from another party, you should contact your corporate counsel to review it and make sure the client is protected. A simple contract needing boilerplate language, terms, considerations and duties of the parties can be assessed quickly. Longer, more complicated documents can take days.
The Value Corporate Attorneys Can Provide
Reading the fine print is often offered as cautionary advice when it comes any contract or agreement. While important, it’s the failure to adhere to conditions that often results in breach of contract issues and other legal disputes. When you receive a document or a contract from another party, you should contact your corporate counsel for review to ensure the appropriate protections are considered.
Legal counsel provides guidance to your firm when it comes to complicated matters regarding contracts, especially when establishing a clear understanding of the duties and obligations of both parties and defining the terms and conditions.
Whether you’re new to the process or have been involved preparing contracts before, it’s advantageous to seek legal advice on some or all of the following:
- Reviewing the Basics. A contract must include an offer made by one party and an acceptance of the offer by the other party. The exchange of something of value, sometimes referred to as considerations, is the reason contracts are written. There may be further requirements for the contract depending on state laws.
- Offer and Acceptance. It’s common in business for the accepting party to request more time “to think about it.” When a deadline isn’t set, offers don’t expire, but attorneys can help define a reasonable amount of time to keep your offer on the table based on a variety of factors including previous contracts between the parties.
- Accepting an Offer. This is usually a simple and straightforward act when dealing with business contracts. Someone makes an offer and you either agree or don’t agree to the terms set forth. Some contracts include provisions that must be met prior to acceptance.
- Rejections and Counteroffers. It’s common in business for one party to make an offer, only to have the other party reject or amend the offer in an attempt to negotiate a better deal. Contract attorneys can help you determine whether it’s legally advisable to make a counteroffer or accept one.
It’s wise to have a qualified attorney review a business contract before an offer is either made or accepted to protect your best interests and help you avoid sleepless nights. Contact us at (619) 298-2880 to schedule a consultation.