The Importance of a Well Drafted Contract

Cosgrove Gaynard Solicitors

The importance of a well-drafted construction contract cannot be overstated.

THE IMPORTANCE OF A WELL DRAFTED CONTRACT

The importance of a well-drafted construction contract cannot be overstated.

A well-drafted contract clearly defines the parties, responsibilities and deadlines. It also anticipates problems that may arise aswell as providing for the unforseen. The ability to provide for the unforeseen when drafting a contract is a skill that takes years of experience to develop and this is where your solicitor is invaluable. The parties involved are generally focused on the project and seldom truly contemplate the potential risks that are inherent in all contracts. Such risks are the financial stability of the companies, delays, personality clashes between the parties and other unforeseen market conditions. Therefore, it is important that it provides for worst case scenarios to ensure that you will be protected if things do not go as planned.

Even more so, in today’s market, it is so often the case that contractors and subcontractors are so eager to get work that they proceed without signing a contract or they sign contracts that either do not make sense or are hugely bias towards the other party. Sometimes the contracts have been drafted by the other party, who, understandably, may have done so to try to save money however in doing so may immediately create huge problems if something goes wrong. For instance, terms of payment – stage payment dates & amounts, indemnity clauses, retention of title clauses and insurance provisions are essential components of any well-drawn construction contract. Serious problems can arise when contractors draft their own contracts or do not have them reviewed from their side. Without intending to do so, they can wind up making themselves liable for negligence on the part of subcontractors, owners or other parties involved in a project.

A contract that is unclear and does not specifically spell out the obligations of each party is ripe for potential litigation that will cost substantially more than the cost of paying a solicitor to properly draft/and or review the contract prior to all parties signing the contract. Therefore to prevent costly litigation, it is imperative to have a solicitor draft all of your business contracts or at least provide you with one that you can use as a template.

At our law firm, Cosgrove Gaynard Solicitors we assist owners, contractors, subcontractors, architects and engineers in negotiating, drafting and reviewing construction contracts, purchase contracts, bidding, construction disputes and litigation.

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