When parties to an agreement intend it to have legal effect, that agreement is called a contract. In New York, contracts may be oral or written, as long as both parties have the same understanding of the terms of the agreement. 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 Point

Negotiation of each specific term in a contract is important to ensure that the intent of each party is met. Also, there are certain clauses that should be included in every West Point contract to give it the desired legal effect. The terms of the contract may be determined based on clear expectations if both parties are forthright about their intentions early on. Also, parties may want to discuss whether they need a provision for resolving any disputes under the contract.

Using a Form Contract

Many West Point, New York 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. However, form contracts can pose problems if they need to be interpreted by courts, especially if they are used without the help of an attorney. First, parties are less likely to read form contracts thoroughly, which may lead to one side being unaware of their duties under the contract. Second, form contracts often use words and language understood only within the legal community. This may cause parties to agree to a term they don't really understand. Attorneys can help ensure that a written contract matches the intent of the parties, whether negotiating a contract or using a form. New York contract law is a field in which many West Point attorneys have specialized.