It never really seems like a good time to hire an attorney. Either things are going well and a lawyer appears to be an unnecessary expense or things are going south and there are other obligations to consider before shelling out money on a lawyer. In actuality, if you are dealing with a contract dispute, a lawyer can save you time, money and sanity. Here we list five ways a lawyer can help improve your experience.
1. Draft a contract suitable to your situation
Generic contract templates get a lot of people in trouble, either because the contract is not the right type for the situation or because not all of the language is appropriate. This lead to questions of meaning and intent, which can turn into litigated conflicts. Hiring a lawyer to draw up the contract from the beginning is a great way to avoid contractual disputes over the meaning or interpretation of the language.
2. Review a contract before signing
Prevention really is the best medicine. If your attorney is not the one to draft the contract, at least have a lawyer read it before signing. Whether the other party’s representative wrote the contract or it came from somewhere like a forms website, there may be clauses not suitable for your situation that can cause you problems down the line.
3. Explain your rights and obligations
Your sincere belief in your position is not an indication of how correct it is. Many people believe they have a stronger case than they actually do and having the knowledgeable advice of a seasoned attorney will help you make a wise decision. If it turns out that the contract clause you insisted on including is not actually enforceable, it is better to hear that from your lawyer early on than to continue with the case under a false belief of winning. On the other hand, if the contract puts you in a very favorable position, you will do better if you know that before settling for less than you are due.
4. Spot issues you may not know to look for
Attorneys are trained by formal education and experience, both of which prepare them to see potential implications in a contract that a non-lawyer might not discover until contractual disputes arise. Issues can range from questions in the contract itself, like how a change in material cost may affect the performance of the contract, to matters outside the scope of the contract, like how its terms may impact a party’s child support obligations or immigration status.
5. Provide representation in court
Many people do not realize that if they have a separate business entity like an LLC, that entity has a distinct legal identity and must be represented by a lawyer in court. In a purely personal dispute, a non-lawyer may represent himself as a pro se party. Without a law license, however, he cannot represent another person – even his own business entity – because that is considered the unauthorized practice of law. A lawyer is an absolute necessity in these cases.
Contact us at Radow Law to get professional services to deal with contractual disputes.