A contract in Iowa is an agreement about anything of value between two or more parties who intend the agreement to have legal effect. It may be oral or written, as long as all parties agree to the contractual terms. In business transactions, written contracts are generally preferred for their reliability. These documents are best drafted by those who understand the law, because the very reason for a contract is to legally obligate the parties.

Negotiating a Contract in West Des Moines

Along with specific clauses that should be included in every West Des Moines contract for it to be valid, it is important to adequately discuss each term to make sure that the intent of each party is understood by the other. Being forthright about your intentions can help the contract goal of mutual understanding of expectations. To conclude negotiations, you may want to include a clause that determines what is to be done if a party fails to meet its duty.

Using a Form Contract

Many West Des Moines, Iowa attorneys use form contracts as a template for any new agreement. The attorney will add or remove contract provisions that the parties want, plus modify the specific language of the form contract to meet the parties' needs. This usually saves all parties time and money. There are risks to using a contract that neither party has written, especially if you proceed without the assistance of an attorney. First, form contracts have the tendency to go unread. Any party who does not carefully review all the contract terms can be left unaware of their obligations under the contract. Second, using a contract that someone else has written can obligate the parties to a contract term that they do not understand. Whether you negotiate or use a form, an attorney can help ensure that the written contract matches your intent. Many attorneys in West Des Moines are experts in Iowa contract law.