4 Reasons to Keep Contract Drafts

Generally, counsel prepares several drafts of a contract or agreement before the parties sign the final version. There are several reasons to retain those drafts.  Continue reading

Take Care: Headings Can Affect Contract Interpretation

As a general practice, section headings should be used to identify the general subject matter of each contract provision, making it easier for the reader. Section headings are very useful for ease of reference. They enable the reader to skim an agreement when searching for a particular provision or group of provisions. But headings can be a trap for the unwary—courts have used them to interpret the parties’ intent when a provision is ambiguous or misleading. Here’s how to protect yourself from the unintended consequences of headings. Continue reading

Know These Interpretation Principles Before You Draft a Contract

contract document drafted by attorney with interpretation principles in mindWhen a contract dispute arises, there may be differing interpretations of the contract terms. A court asked to construe the disputed terms will look to statutory principles. But don’t wait for a dispute to learn these principles—be aware of them when drafting an agreement to ensure that they won’t counteract your client’s intent.  Continue reading

Draft Agreements with Contract Construction Principles in Mind

463468333Generally it’s the parties’ mutual intent that controls a contract’s interpretation. But that intent isn’t always easy to figure out. When the parties dispute a contract’s interpretation and it goes to court, the court applies certain statutory principles. Don’t wait for a dispute to learn these principles—be aware of them and let them guide you as you draft every agreement.  Continue reading

4 Ways to Avoid Ambiguity in Your Writing

Ambiguity in any writing is annoying, but in a contract it can be devastating if you wrote it, because any ambiguity in a contract is likely to be construed against you. Here are some ways to avoid ambiguity in your next writing. Continue reading