Business Owners - Get it in Writing

If you’ve ever had the pleasurable experience of spending significant time with an attorney, you realize they absolutely love documents.   Paper, whether it is an incriminating email introduced at trial, or a simple promissory note providing repayment terms, is a fixation for most lawyers.  The reasons for this are fairly simple; people’s memories not only fade, but recollection of a specific event often varies considerably between people despite the fact that they may have experienced the exact same event.  Documents, however, have a semi-permanence that lasts through time.

Attorneys also realize, as do savvy business owners, that courts also love documents.  Courts will routinely enforce written contracts despite the fact that one of the parties to the agreement claims to have a different understanding of the “actual agreement”.  The words in a written agreement make a difference, and no one should casually sign any important written agreement.

One of the best ways small business owners can protect themselves is to be vigilant about the written agreements they sign.  Many modern written agreements are incredibly complex, and the terms used can have dire consequences if one does not understand them.  Remember that the agreement is written on paper, not stone, and terms are negotiable.

Business owners can also help their business by having important understandings and agreements put in writing.  That way all parties can understand going forward what is expected of them, and what they can expect of the other side.  Assumptions and unspoken or unaddressed issues can derail the best intentions.

If you need an agreement prepared, or you have an agreement that needs review, do yourself a favor and have experienced counsel provide their opinion.  Our firm handles these issues daily.  For more information feel free to call our firm, or check out additional information at:

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