Should I get my contract reviewed by a lawyer?
Some key advice lawyers generally give to clients is to get their contracts reviewed prior to signing. Contracts vary from business contracts, contracts of sale of land, build contracts even employment agreements, it is important to know what you are signing up for and will be legally bound by.
Fairly often we are approached by clients who in the beginning believed the contract and legal obligations they were entering into were “fairly standard” and are eventually disappointed by a term they come across or are affected by when the contract is already binding. That is why we encourage our clients to have their contracts reviewed and obtain relevant advice.
5 reasons you should engage a lawyer for a contract review and advice:
- Experience & Expertise:
A lawyer has the knowledge and background of reviewing and looking over legal documentation that may be hard to understand. Contracts are usually drafted in “lawyer language” meaning they entail complex provisions and clauses that may be hard to understand which refer to relevant acts and regulations.
- Risk Management & Risk Control:
You may not be aware of the benefits of having a contract looked over before signing as it may be a financial burden, however, in the long run it is safer to do so as it may limit your potential risk.
The intent of the review and advice itself is to ensure there are no bumps along the road in the future and to control and manage potential risks before the contract is executed and preventing you being strained by a legal obligation you’re not happy with upholding.
For instance, if you’re purchasing property and approach a lawyer for a contract review, they’ll be able to advise whether there’s potential risks that come along with the property that agents or the other side may not have disclosed with you.
- Unfavourable Terms:
Some contracts may entail terms that are unfavourable to the person signing. These terms can be disclosed with you beforehand in the advice given to you by your lawyer once the contract review is completed. Rather than risk being bound to follow through on obligations you do not agree with because you didn’t seem to understand the nature of the term in question.
Approaching a lawyer for a contract review and advice allows for your input as well. Your lawyer will be able to identify whether your terms and conditions are met and reflected in the contract. If not, they may be able to negotiate with the other side to include terms you propose.
- Establishing your rights:
Contract reviews are recommended to establish what your rights and obligations are per the contract. As well as avoid potential breach because you may have either misinterpreted or not have been aware of a term.
Generally, the most obvious and safe answer is yes to getting a contract reviewed. It is well worth the cost as it can save you money and time in the long run, as well as manage the risk of being bound by unfavourable terms or breaching a term you may not have fully understood or agreed with at the time of the contract execution.
If you need a legal document/ contract reviewed and you may require our assistance, please feel free to contact our office on (03) 9942 7790 or email Nick Karolidis at firstname.lastname@example.org .