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June 2011 - Business Law & Order - Joseph F. Lorenz

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Commercial agreements set the ground rules for how you or your business interacts with your, customers, bankers, investors, suppliers, landlord and other third parties with whom you have business dealings. Our panel of experienced attorneys will discuss the basic fundamentals of contracts, also known as commercial agreements. Attorney Joe Lorenz will talk about entering into contracts (why you need contracts and how contracts are formed). Attorney Tom Cavalier will discuss performance of the contract you enter into (what are the important terms and conditions – how do they affect you). Attorney Joe Sgroi will talk about terminating contracts (how can you get out of a bad agreement -- or obtain performance from the other party). And….of course, the entire panel will be available to answer your questions!

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June 2011 - Business Law & Order - Joseph F. Lorenz

  1. 1. Contracts: What They Are, and Why You Need Them (or) What I Would Want to Know if I Were You Joe Lorenz June 20, 2011 Borda Lorenz PC 248-735-8800 Contents do not constitute legal advice. Copyright 2011 Borda Lorenz PC
  2. 2. <ul><li>Contracts </li></ul><ul><li>Why You Need Them </li></ul><ul><li>What They Are </li></ul><ul><li>What the law expects you to know </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>Why Do You Need a Contract? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Protection </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Get what you pay for </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Get paid for what you give </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>Why Do You Need a Contract? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Handshake might work well </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>But human nature means </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>people have selective memories </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>Why Do You Need a Contract? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Remember the Golden Rule: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The palest ink is worth more </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>than the freshest memory </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>What They Are </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Definition </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Form of Contract can vary </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. <ul><li>What They Are </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Letter of intent </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Teaming Agreement </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Memorandum of Understanding </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Can all be Contracts </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><li>What They Are </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Does it have to be in writing? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Oral agreements can be enforceable </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Problem is proving the terms </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. <ul><li>What They Are </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Contract has to be in writing for </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>sales of goods over $5,000 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>or </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>sale of land </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>What They Are </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Don’t rely on oral agreements </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Worth the time to write it down </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Efficiencies are available </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. <ul><li>What They Are </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Remember: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>If you don’t get it in writing, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>you may not get it. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Don’t leave out the details </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. <ul><li>What They Are </li></ul><ul><ul><li>When do I have a binding agreement? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Three things are required: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Offer </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Acceptance </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> Consideration </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. <ul><li>What They Are </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Offer </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Acceptance </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consideration </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. <ul><li>What They Are </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Understand the consideration </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>If you are the customer , exactly what are you paying, and when? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Is that price subject to change? </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. <ul><li>What They Are </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Understand the consideration </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>If you are the seller , what have you promised? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>When is that due? </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. <ul><li>What the Law expects you to know </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Many companies use standard forms </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sales orders </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Purchase orders </li></ul></ul>
  17. 17. <ul><li>What the Law expects you to know </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sales orders and Purchase orders make for the Battle of the Forms </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mirror Rule and Knockout Rule </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Don’t plan to win the Battle— </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>work to avoid it </li></ul></ul>
  18. 18. <ul><li>What the Law expects you to know </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Law assumes you know about warranties </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Implied versus Express warranties </li></ul></ul>
  19. 19. <ul><li>What is the Lesson here? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Pay attention to the terms of your deal </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Get and give your commitments in writing </li></ul></ul>
  20. 20. <ul><li>What is the Lesson here? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>If the terms of an offer or a confirmation contain things you don’t like, speak up and don’t be shy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be clear on what you want, and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>when you want it </li></ul></ul>
  21. 21. Contracts: What They Are, and Why You Need Them (or) What I Would Want to Know if I Were You Joe Lorenz June 20, 2011 Borda Lorenz PC 248-735-8800 Contents do not constitute legal advice. Copyright 2011 Borda Lorenz PC

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