Do You Need a Lawyer to Write a Contract?
If you occasionally deal with agreements, you have probably asked yourself at some point whether it is really necessary to involve a lawyer to prepare or review an agreement. The agreement you’re handling may appear to be relatively simple and you don’t see the need to pay for a lawyer’s services. Or you may have used a certain agreement in the past and you intend to re-purpose it for a similar project. Also, many agreements are available as templates online (either for free or for a small fee) and you may be tempted to download and use such agreements without seeking any legal advice.
While cost considerations are certainly understandable, forgoing legal counsel for financial reasons may turn out to be ill-advised. As the British say: “penny wise, pound foolish”. By way of example, you may not have read or fully understood an agreement you entered into and subsequently you discover that you have certain contractual obligations that you did not anticipate, which might end up being more expensive. Or an agreement which was tailored to a project in the past and that you plan to use for a new project does not reflect legislative changes occurred since the original agreement was entered into (e.g., European General Data Protection Regulation).
These examples illustrate that it might be advisable to involve an attorney when preparing, reviewing and negotiating an agreement. A contract lawyer can
- help you choose the right type of agreement (e.g., do you need a services agreement or a non-disclosure agreement?);
- prepare an agreement based on your input;
- review a draft agreement received from the other party;
- negotiate the agreement;
- explain contractual provisions to you and help you understand how they might affect your business.
Consulting with an experienced contract lawyer before entering into an agreement hardly represents any downside. As to the legal fees associated with such advice, for a company or entrepreneur they should be considered to be a part of the cost of doing business.
The information contained in this blog is provided for informational purposes only and should not be understood or construed as legal advice.