Benefits of a Plain-Language Contract
Plain-language contracting saves businesses time and money. Kill "legalese" and wordy contracts with short sentences written in the active voice. We focus on what really matters: understandability. An easy to understand agreement should:
By eliminating ambiguities, minimizing legalese, and planning for contingencies, you can address any issues that may come up in an agreement.
Use short, simple sentences. By steering away from passive voice and avoiding repetition, you lower the risk of misinterpretation.
By tailoring the contract to your business and keeping to a standard form and substance from beginning to end, your contracts hold up better to scrutiny.
Establish Customized Provisions
Take the time to understand how the products or services and the associated risks will play out in reality. Then, customize the terms to work for you and your business.
Be Easily Explained
The ultimate test is whether you truly understand and can feel confident explaining the contract, without a lawyer. You should not have to call an attorney to interpret an agreement you are expecting your customers, contractors, or employees to sign.
Avoid Contract Pitfalls
Contracts are important when operating a small business, and they are one of the leading reasons small business owners end up in court. A contract is a binding agreement between two or more parties that is enforceable by law. If it’s not in writing, it’s usually a legal hassle.
Whether it’s an agreement between partners or contractors, we have you covered—all at a clear, fixed fee. The only surprise is how easy we’ve made it to work with a lawyer!
“Dana was so incredibly helpful in answering all of my questions. I run a small design business and she was able to lay out everything I needed to make sure I was covered in every aspect of my business—which I would have over-looked otherwise. Dana and her whole staff is friendly and will treat you with respect. Thanks!”
Contract Agreements 101
The reality is that we assume our relationships will be a win-win until there is a problem. Good contracts are hard to write because it takes significant skill and expertise to evaluate the needs of your business and determine the key language to include or not, given the circumstances. There are a handful of contracts that will preserve your relationships even if a problem does occur. Here are some important Agreements to consider:
- Eliminate concerns with pricing, delays, change orders, etc.
- Preserve your reputation as a credible company to work with
- Protect the business from liabilities and risks that lead to a lawsuit.
- Employees are clear on the job specifics, i.e. pay, work schedule, time off, requirements, qualifications, etc.
- Protects trade secrets.
- Protects intellectual property.
- Defines ownership of work product.
- Prevents employees from stealing clients, customers or coworkers.
- Terms are easy to understand.
- Defines clear expectations with Scope of Work or Services.
- Provides specifics on contractors obligations for expenses, contractor’s employees, insurance, taxes and fees.
- Allows either party to terminate the relationship.
- Prevents contractor from disclosing trade secrets or client lists.
- Protects intellectual property of both contractor and the business.
- Protects personal assets.
- Avoids legal hassles when partner dies or wants out of the business.
- Forces business partners to address issues early.
- Reduces risk when unintentional harm happens
- Controls how decisions are made
- Banning user abuse
- Protecting ownership rights in your content
- Limiting liability
- Controlling the governing law
Selling or buying a business is not a simple process. For ownership to transfer smoothly and legally, the purchase documents will include Purchase Agreement, Assignment and Assumption, and Bill of Sale. This process may also include (depending on the nature of the transaction) Seller Non-Compete; Allocation Schedule, Disclosures, Corporate Consents; Officer Resignation; Secured Promissory Note, Personal Guaranty; UCC-1 Registration; DBA; Equipment Lease; Commercial Lease Assignment; and the Formation of a new legal entity. Be on the lookout for terms to negotiate like:
- Covenant not to compete
- Confidentiality and Non-disclosure.
When a purchaser buys the assets of a business, the purchaser may or may not take on responsibility for the business’s liabilities.
The deal can be negotiated as a purchase of assets, membership interests of an LLC, or stock purchase of a corporation.
Payment at closing can be in a lump sum or with a secured promissory note as the parties agree. Title to the business is conveyed with a Bill of Sale.
The seller agrees that he or she is the true owner of the business and currently has marketable title to all of the assets of the business; the seller has not entered into any other contracts relating to the business; there are no judgments, liens, or any other pending legal actions against the business; and that the business is solvent.
”I used Dana when I sold a business. She was easy to work with, very knowledgeable and I felt as though she was genuinely invested is getting the best outcome for me. In the future, I would look to her for any legal advice again without hesitation.
”Dana Ball and her team did an excellent job putting together a contract for my company. They discussed contractual details with me that hadn't even crossed my mind. Dana made sure I understood what was in my contract and why it mattered.
”We couldn’t be happier with our decision to hire Dana for our legal counsel. With Dana’s guidance we are able to confidently navigate the legal ins and outs of our business and avoid any potential issues in the future.
What types of contracts does your business need?
Avoid costly misunderstandings with clear, straightforward, and easy to understand terms.
We have been crafting contracts for businesses since 2002. Let our experience help you save time and money. We will evaluate the practical language to use to cover the needs of your business and your expectations.