In Tennessee, a contract is different from a normal agreement in that the parties to a contract intend their agreement to have legal effect. Contracts may be oral or written, as long as both parties have the same understanding of the terms of the agreement. The reliability of written contracts typically make them the preferred means for businesses to transact. Since the intent of a contract is to be legally effective, they are best formed by those who understand the law.
Negotiating a Contract in Knoxville
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 Knoxville contract to give it the desired legal effect. 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 Knoxville, Tennessee 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, parties using form contracts often do not read all the terms, and can therefore be unaware of their obligations 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. An attorney can ensure that a written contract matches the intent of the parties, both with form contracts and in negotiations. In Knoxville, many attorneys specialize in Tennessee contract law.