If you are an entrepreneur or business owner you may not yet realize how important your use and understanding of business contracts will be to the success of your business. Rather than hit you over the head with a long and complicated discussion, I thought I’d do something a little different this time and give you a great list of DOs and DON’Ts to make getting acclimated a little easier.
DO title your contract “CONTRACT” so that there is no mistake about what it is
DO make sure all parties are properly identified by the full legal names that are spelled correctly with up-to-date addresses
DO use a template or generic contract as a guide
DO include the date right at the start
DO use page numbers to protect against the contract being changed after signing
DO make sure all terms are carefully stipulated within the contract
DO use short and plain language as much as possible to limit possible ambiguities
DO make sure you have your attorney review it before signing
DO make sure to have the contract notarized as well as have all parties initial each page
DO keep a copy for your records
DO proofread as even a misplaced quotation mark can change the meaning
DO use a colored ink pen to make the original easy to distinguish from any copy
DO make sure you are as thorough as you can be so that nothing is left out of the contract
DON’T use overly legal or archaic phrases that do little to clarify the meaning of the text of the contract
DON’T use overly long sentences. Break everything down as much as possible.
DON’T be unnecessarily repetitive. It’s better to refer back than repeat.
DON’T assume that all parties understand terms to mean the same thing, instead define them within the contract.
DON’T agree to any changes to the contract unless they are first put into writing.
DON’T rush through or skim the contract. Read it thoroughly to ensure you don’t miss anything.
DON’T accept any oral explanations you don’t understand. Get it in writing.
DON’T assume that because you used a template or standard contract you don’t need to have your attorney review it before you put pen to paper.
Still Have Questions?
That’s a lot of DOs and DON’Ts. Don’t feel bad if you still have questions. In fact, that’s what we’re here for. The Law Offices of Yoel Molina has been serving small business clients in the state of Florida for years and has the legal insight and expertise needed to ensure your business contracts are as air-tight as possible. So what are you waiting for? Give us a call today