Contracts essentially set forth the terms by which a construction project should be carried out and are a major part of the construction industry. Before signing any contract or legal agreement, it is imperative that you understand all of its components. Contract review and drafting are critical for getting your projects off to the right start.
Our Jacksonville construction attorneys are here to share some important contract review tips. We’ll conclude our tips in part two of our article as well as state the benefits of hiring one of our reputable Jacksonville construction attorneys.
Read the Complete Contract
We have said it before but it is always worth mentioning again — read your contracts! Some contracts can be long, boring, and overwhelming to take in, but it is critical that you read your contract. Contracts are binding and once in force, cannot be altered without mutual agreement between all parties involved. Even if it is a pretty standard contract, resist the urge to gloss over aspects you are familiar with. Contracts affect all parties so be sure you understand it, including all of its accompanying attachments such as addendums, exhibits, and specifications, before signing on the dotted line.
Scrutinize Change Orders
Change orders are not always avoidable. They are also a common contributing factor to construction disputes. Double checking your contract and putting a change order process in place is the first way to effectively deal with change orders because they can be a costly addition to a project if handled improperly. Contract language is foremost, and requiring change orders or extra work to be agreed to in writing is crucial.
Indemnity clauses are common contract clauses that should be carefully reviewed before signing the agreement. Indemnifying a party means you are assuming responsibility for them and waiving any rights against that party (also known as “hold harmless”). These clauses shift potential costs from one party to another, so make sure you review Florida Statute 725.06 to better understand the restrictions of the clause.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.