My New “Drafting Clearer Contracts” Video Webcasts with West LegalEdcenter; Sponsorship by Business Integrity

[Updated June 4, 2009] I'm pleased to announce that starting June 11, I'll be offering through West LegalEdcenter a series of seven video webcasts entitled "Drafting Clearer Contracts." Each webcast will be an hour long. They'll be rolled out one by one through the second half of July. Five of the webcasts will explore topics discussed in my book A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting and … [Read more...]

The Meaning of “Draft”

How come one drafts a contact but writes a letter? The verb draft has a number of possible meanings, but here's what the Oxford English Dictionary—the bound version, not the online version—gives as the one definition relating to preparing documents: "To make a draft or rough copy of (a document); to draw up in preliminary form, which may be afterwards perfected." That's OK as far as it goes, … [Read more...]

Playing Games With the Date Next to the Signature

Having parties to a contract date their signatures makes sense when there's a lag time between when the first party signs and the last party signs. And some auditors are requiring that their clients use dated signatures in all their contracts. But dating signatures can be a nuisance. As I noted in this November 2008 blog post, one problem is that parties sometimes return signed signature pages … [Read more...]

Perspectives: Chris Rowley of Vinson & Elkins

The interviews I’ve done on this blog have been about technologies relevant to the contract process or have explored some narrow topic that I’m particularly interested in. What’s been missing is interviews in which people who work with contracts discuss issues relevant to them. Here’s the first such interview; I’ll be doing others every so often, all under the rubric … [Read more...]

Keep This Stuff Out of Your Contracts

Black-and-white is simpler than shades of gray—the most straightforward MSCD recommendations are those urging you to scrap entirely a given word or phrase. Here's a partial list of words and phrases that ideally would be absent from your contracts: at no time best efforts covenant for the avoidance of doubt hereinafter referred to as including but not limited to including without … [Read more...]