Business contracts are unavoidable when you are an entrepreneur, and knowing how to write one will save you time and money. Contracts are most commonly used for the exchange of goods or to provide a value for something. Most business contracts should have concise language so they are not too long and allow for applicability as a template for later use.
Do not write contracts completely from scratch because it is unnecessary and time-consuming. If lawyers can use previous contracts to outline new contracts, you can as well. Start by searching the Internet for templates depending on the type of contract you are creating (such as employment, exchange of goods, consultation, etc.). You can also speak with an attorney to provide a template for you. Be aware of the terms that you need for the deal and ensure that they are aligned in the language of the contract.
Label the paragraphs with numbers, then subparagraphs with labels such as a) b) c) or i) ii) iii).
The first section of the contract should list all of the parties included by the business name registered with state. Complete contact information should be provided in the event there is a discrepancy.
The reason you are creating the contract is an important point to clarify. It should be presented from the beginning and maintained throughout. For example, if you are using this for employment, you will list the salary, benefits, time frame, and responsibilities.
Any deadlines that will occur over the course of the contract must be included. If it has been agreed upon when you hire someone, the start and end date as well as a timeline of changes in responsibilities would be included. Along the same lines, if there is a failure on either side, the consequences should be explained.
For any services or products that require compensation, the timeline of payment, complete cost, and an explanation of the invoice. This would include what services are provided and addresses that are included.
Layout in the contract what should be confidential between the parties that are signing. This may include payment, services provided, and information exchanged.
A dispute is an issue when one or both of the parties cannot agree on the way a contract is read or enforced. Often times, the parties will resolve the issue without the need for an outside consultation. There are circumstances when a third party will need to be brought in, and this should be laid out in the contract. It would explain how and when the parties would meet to discuss. Mediation or arbitration is the most likely option for your business, however litigation is also an option. Litigation is typically a last resort because of the high cost.
Guarantees, warranties, and indemnifications may also be included in the contract to explain the roles of the parties involved. Grounds for termination is commonly provided as well. Once you have completed a business contract, consult with an attorney to ensure the language is adequate. It is easy to lock yourself into an unintentional situation, so be sure to cover all of your bases.
Holt Law does not reinvent the wheel. We use time-tested and tailored agreements that we can then modify to fit your needs which keeps our pricing down.