Your company should have a standard form contract that you use when dealing with customers or clients. Every contract can be tailored to be more favorable to one side or the other. You can start with your form of contract, and your clients can agree and sign or request changes be made. Working with a lawyer who is experienced with the right wording to use, can save you a lot of time and money in the long run.
Some key items to come up with your form of contract are:
- Get sample contracts of what other people do in the industry, you don’t need to re-invent a contract.
- Make sure you have an experienced business lawyer doing the drafting, one that already has good forms to start with.
- Make sure you make it look like a standard form pre-printed contract with typeface and font size.
- Don’t make it so ridiculously long that the other side will throw up their hands when they see it.
- Make sure you have clearly spelled out pricing, when payment is due, and what penalties or interest is owed if payment isn’t made.
- Try to limit warranties when possible, about products and services.
- Include limitations on your liability if the product or service doesn’t meet expectations.
- Include a “force majeure” clause relieving you from breach if unforeseen events occur.
- Include a clause on how disputes will be resolved. Our preference is for confidential binding arbitration in front of one arbitrator.