Business Contract Drafting, Negotiation and Disputes
Invest in the Success of Your Business – Work With a Fort Lauderdale Business Contract Attorney
Contracts are the lifeblood of your business. Unfortunately, poorly drafted, one-sided contracts can result in serious problems for your company when you least expect it. You can find yourself trapped by overly-specific requirements or without the protection you need due to vague and ambiguous language. In the event of a dispute, you need your contracts to be clear and enforceable. Each Fort Lauderdale business contract attorney at Olive Judd works with our clients to ensure that their contracts meet their business needs. From reviewing existing contracts to drafting and negotiating new contracts, we have the knowledge and experience you need. Invest in your business by scheduling a consultation with one of our South Florida business contract attorneys – call us at (954) 334-2250 or visit us online today.
The Problem With Online and Form Contracts
We understand the pressures of generating new business. It’s difficult to take time out to review a contract closely and simply trust that your new relationship will never face challenges. Whether you are using form contracts that you found online or you’re signing a contract presented to you, you should be aware of some of the common problems that are inherent in these contracts:
- The contract may not be enforceable in the state of Florida. Form contracts are often drafted to be applicable in as many states as possible. Unfortunately, this may render certain provisions or even the entire contract unenforceable.
- The contract may require disputes to be litigated in some other jurisdiction. Another common issue with form documents is that you may be required to litigate any disputes out of state. These types of clauses can make it expensive and difficult to resolve disputes.
- The contract may be one-sided. Form contracts are usually drafted in favor of the party that is presenting the contract. It may impose onerous notice requirements on you, limit your rights in the event of a dispute, and require you to pay attorney’s fees, costs, and interest in the event that you withhold payment.
- The contract does not offer adequate protection for you. Your contacts need clear and unambiguous specifications that will allow you to identify when the other party has breached the contract. In the event of a breach, you need to be sure that you will be able to pursue a claim against them.
How a Fort Lauderdale Business Contract Attorney Can Help
Many business owners are wary of engaging a lawyer. While contract attorneys can certainly be expensive, they provide a value-added service that can help your business thrive. Here are some of the services that our team can provide to help you achieve your business goals:
- Review your existing contracts and identify potential problems
- Draft new contracts that are specific to your business operations and tailored to meet your specific needs
- Negotiate contracts with business partners, vendors, and customers
- Enforce contracts against parties in default, resolve contract disputes, and litigate issues that can’t be resolved
More importantly, our business contract lawyers can give you valuable legal advice regarding any contract questions or issues that may arise.
Let a Fort Lauderdale Contract Dispute Lawyer from Our Firm Ease Your Stress
Olive Judd has significant experience resolving complex and sophisticated contract disputes. Our firm represents multinational Fortune 100 companies, large and small corporations, locally-owned businesses, real estate developers, and high net worth individuals throughout Florida and across the nation. Our legal team is well-positioned to draft your contract as well as defend and litigate a full range of contract disputes in state and federal court, including disputes involving:
- Shareholder operating agreements
- Complex purchase and sales agreements
- Complex real estate purchases
- Real estate development
- Complex construction agreements
- Executive compensation agreements
When conflicts arise, our contract dispute lawyers work as a team to develop innovative strategies aimed at resolving disputes in the most favorable manner possible for our clients. While we strive to resolve contract disputes quickly and cost-effectively, we know that settlement may not always be a viable option. From day one, we prepare every matter as if it is going to trial. This approach gives us a stronger position throughout the negotiation process and increases the likelihood of a successful verdict or favorable result in mediation or arbitration.
We understand that contract disputes can seriously threaten a company’s reputation and bottom line. Our Fort Lauderdale contract disputes lawyers are creative, meticulous, and dedicated to protecting our clients’ businesses and financial interests. We have successfully handled complex disputes involving multi-million dollar claims and are determined to achieve superior results for our clients in every matter that we handle
Common Issues in Business Contract Disputes
While there are numerous issues that can lead to disputes between contracting parties, some are more common than others. The following are all examples of issues our Fort Lauderdale contract dispute lawyers commonly encounter when representing clients in contract-related disputes, alternative dispute resolution (ADR) proceedings and litigation:
Payment and Performance Claims
Many contract disputes arise from one party’s failure to perform or make payment as and when required. In some cases, the parties’ respective payment and performance obligations will be fairly clear-cut. In others, questions may exist as to whether, and to what extent, a party’s non-performance or non-payment was excused. Disputes frequently arise regarding the quality of contractual performance as well, and many conflicts go to court on the issue of whether one party’s performance was adequate in light of the terms to which the parties agreed.
Breach of Duty Claims
Contract disputes between business partners and business entities will often involve allegations of breach of duty. Business owners owe various duties to their companies, and to one another, and breaches of these duties can have significant negative ramifications. This includes breaches such as failing to act in the company’s best interests and engaging in conflict-of-interest transactions.
Termination Rights and Obligations Post-Termination
Disputes regarding one party’s termination rights can arise in various contexts. While some contracts are explicit regarding termination as a remedy, others are not. Likewise, while some contracts specifically address termination without cause, others are entirely silent on the issue. Disputes regarding parties’ post-termination obligations are common as well, particularly in cases involving business, employment, licensing, and franchising relationships.
Warranty, Indemnification, and Other Liability-Shifting Claims
In the commercial context, disputes often arise regarding warranty, indemnification, and other liability-shifting provisions. For example, a contract between a manufacturer and a distributor should clearly delineate each party’s financial responsibility for consumer claims. However, these clauses are often poorly drafted, and vague or incomplete terms can leave open questions as to whether liability should shift under a particular set of circumstances. When this is the case, litigation will typically follow.
Questions of Contract Interpretation
Contract disputes often involve questions of interpretation. Does the clause at issue support one party’s position? Or, does it support the other party’s position? When a contract term and the relevant law are not clearly on either party’s side, the parties will often be compelled to litigate in order to reach a resolution that allows them to move forward.
Enforceability of Dispute Resolution Clauses
In some cases, contracted parties will need to address the enforceability of their agreement’s dispute resolution provisions before litigating their substantive dispute. Questions regarding the enforceability of jurisdiction clauses, venue clauses, and mandatory ADR provisions will typically need to be resolved before parties can litigate the merits of their substantive claims and defenses.
We Take a Pragmatic Approach to Resolving Complex Contract Disputes
We understand that contract disputes can seriously threaten a company’s reputation and bottom line. Our Fort Lauderdale contract dispute lawyers are creative, meticulous, and dedicated to protecting our clients’ businesses and financial interests. We have successfully handled complex disputes involving multi-million dollar claims and are determined to achieve superior results for our clients in every case that we handle. Regardless of the circumstances surrounding your contract dispute, we can develop an informed case strategy, and we can help you make informed decisions focused on protecting your company’s immediate and long-term interests.
Contact Olive Judd Before You Sign Anything or When Conflict Arises
Don’t wait to talk to a lawyer until you’re involved in a heated contract dispute – secure your business’ future by speaking with a Fort Lauderdale business contract attorney today. To schedule a consultation to learn more about how we can help, contact us online or call us at (954) 334-2250.