If you are a small business owner, chances are you rely on contracts to accomplish a variety of projects. Because of the widespread use of contracts, contract disputes are some of the most common legal hurdles of running a business. Disagreements and delays can result in serious losses for your company.
A contract dispute may bring your projects to a halt and significantly impact your business. Here are some tips for exercising awareness and care when entering into a business contract.
1. Get a notary public
One of the most effective methods at enforcing the terms of a contract is getting the document notarized. When you find a notary public to verify the signing of the document, both parties are likely to take the contractual obligation more seriously. While it may not be a legal requirement to notarize your contractual agreements, it is a good rule of thumb to make it enforceable in court.
2. Consider future variables
Do not just think of the here and now when writing and signing a contract. You must account for various possibilities that can arise in months or years down the road. For example, think about whether you want a renegotiation or automatic renewal of the contract after a period of time. Consider including a clause outlining the circumstances that may void the contract. Additionally, you may want to put a survival clause in the document.
3. Budget before starting your project
A major factor in many contract disputes is payment. Make sure you finalize your budget and account for all expenses before the contract goes into effect. While you may not be able to anticipate every possible cost, do your best to consider all the variables. Make sure the other party understands all the language regarding expenses and compensation.
Contractual disagreements can result in unnecessary delays, expenditures of resources and strained professional relationships. But by doing your due diligence, you can prevent legal matters from arising.