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Read The Contract Before You Sign It - Really!

Agreements are part of everyday life. If you’ve agreed to work in exchange for a paycheck, or to pay a mortgage or rent, you’ve made an agreement. An agreement that is legally enforceable is a contract and they can be taken to court. That means you can be taken to court to uphold your end of the contract.


Since most lawsuits for breach of contract arise from contracts that are not clear and complete and that don't express the agreement as it was understood by the parties, it is important to not only read the contract before you sign it, but get a second opinion.


Beware signing a contract that does not define definitions. For example, if payment is due upon “completion of the project” make sure it is spelled out in the contract what constitutes completion of the project. If it’s a construction contract, does completion include clean-up, what if you and the contractor don’t agree the job is complete, then what happens? That should be spelled out in your contract.


Also, just because the contract is nicely typed-up, don’t be afraid to make changes. The hours spent rewriting the contract could save you years of litigation.




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