Small Businesses: Should I Have a Lawyer Draft a Contract for my Business?
Without question, contracts govern our businesses and how they interact with both customers and other businesses. Contracts are commonly thought of as written documents, but even when your neighbor’s kid agrees on a handshake to mow your lawn for $20, you’re technically entering a contract. In fact, did you realize you enter a contract every time you purchase groceries at the store?
It’s easy to see how you don’t need to sweat over a $20 deal to mow the lawn; however, the more money that’s at stake in a given contract, the more important it becomes to have your legal rights carefully written down and well understood by everyone involved. It may surprise you to know that we’ve had clients who entered commercial transactions (before coming to our law firm, mind you!) worth over $1,000,000 that were based on an oral agreement! These matters often wind up in extremely costly and time consuming litigation, as you can imagine.
So, should you have a lawyer draft a services contract for the work your business does? There is no hard and fast rule for this; however, the general rule of thumb is that the more money you have at stake in a given transaction, the more you’ll need a well-written contract.
Every business is different, but having a well-written contract can assist you in a number of ways. For example, if you require recurring payments by debit or credit card, your contract can spell out your right to charge those payments automatically to your client’s card–saving all kinds of administrative hassle. For a renovation contractor or subcontractor, having provisions that spell out your right to adapt changes in the plans to conditions you find on the property you’re renovating (and correspondingly, the price for your services) can save you all kinds of grief. And for a wedding photographer, having a schedule of non-refundable deposits goes a long way towards ensuring you retain profits in the face of cancellations.
The number of ways having a clear, well-written contract, that is tailored to your business’s needs, can help your business are simply too numerous to list here in this blog. And, with experience in drafting business contracts and familiarity with the kinds of issues that lead to disputes, the business attorneys here at Asheville Legal are particularly well situated to draft such a contract for your business. Give us a call today to find out how we can help.