Why bother with a written contract?

Why bother with a written contract?

10:20 19 January in News

Why do you have terms of business? Why bother documenting your privacy policy on your website? Why bother recording any kind of contract terms?

I practice commercial law and therefore in learning about my clients’ businesses and their objectives when instructing me. I also practice commercial dispute resolution. I therefore see some of the catastrophic effects of absence of planning and documenting arrangements within businesses and between businesses and between businesses and their customers. It is, therefore, easy for me to see the value in preparing a written contract and I know that if some of those who come to see me when I’m wearing my ‘litigation hat ‘had the opportunity again, they would certainly document their arrangements in written contracts and be careful in considering the contents of those contracts. Unfortunately, many corners are cut and I see the false economy of saving a few hundred pounds at the beginning of the business journey and the sometimes catastrophic consequences and crippling expense of disputes and litigation can occur as a result of this.

The purpose of involving a solicitor in recording agreements between businesses or in drafting terms and policies for your website or contracts between parties within the business is to try and achieve as much certainty as possible. It tends to be uncertainty and misunderstanding (sometimes very genuine misunderstanding) that leads to disputes and the fallout from them.

I respectfully suggest that the money that you might spend to have a solicitor receive your instructions, understand your objectives and deliver a document that delivers a far greater degree of certainty, is money well spent. On the other hand, you could just take your chances.

If you would like to know more, you can contact Keith at:

E: [email protected] or

T: 01756 700200

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Keith Hardington

[email protected]