The importance of a contract is that it fixes the terms between the parties. A well drafted contract can reduce conflict and misunderstanding.
In New York an oral contract can be enforced, if (1) the contract can be performed in a year and (2) it does not involve real property.
However, we at Port and Sava would recommend always having a written contract. A written contract reduces misunderstandings and if you need to go to court, the court will enforce its terms.
A written contract which is not clear in its terms and uses ambiguous terms is an invitation to litigation.
In it’s most simple form, a contract is an agreement where each party agrees to do a service. “I will pay you $1 if you sell me a soda.” As the tasks become more complicated, so must a contract.
“If I give you $5,000, you will sell me a cookie cutter machine.” While this may seem simple, it actually is not. In any transaction questions need to be asked. First, when the item be ready? Is the buyer picking it up or is it being delivered? If the item is damaged before delivery, does the buyer get his money back? If the item breaks within a specified period, does he get his money back? Is the seller going to service the machine, and if so, for how long? Is there a warranty?
So, even a simple purchase of equipment can be complicated. The problem comes from the fact that the buyer and seller are not looking beyond the sale. They have not considered the possibilities for things going wrong. However, Murphy’s Law (“if anything can go wrong, it will”) must always be taken into account when drafting contracts.
At Port and Sava, not only do we draft contracts, but because we litigate contract breaches, we understand how contracts can go wrong. Our experience translates into contracts which protect your interests.