Ken Adams

Simplifying Contracts

Reader David Munn recently wrote this item regarding an interview in which Tim Cummins of the International Association for Contract and Commercial Management asked the heads of Legal and Audit at Scottish & Newcastle, one of the world’s largest brewers, about their contract simplification program, called Pathclear. Click here to go IACCM’s web page about the interview; click here to … Read More

New Jersey Business Law Symposium

On March 9th I’ll be one of the speakers at the 2007 Business Law Symposium organized by the New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education. It will be held at the Sheraton at Woodbridge Place, in Iselin, New Jersey. I’ll be conducting a 1.5 hour seminar in the afternoon on the structure of M&A contracts. I’m finishing up an article … Read More

Superfluous Provisions

A reader recently sent me the following email: I’d appreciate your comments on an issue that’s been plaguing me off and on. I often see contracts with a fixed term. This works for a lease or license or a funding agreement where government agrees to provide funding to an entity for a specific period. At the end of that period, … Read More

Yesterday’s Seminar in New York

My New York “Contract Drafting—Language and Layout” seminar took place yesterday. I haven’t yet reviewed the evaluations, but the participants appeared to have found it very useful. For my part, I enjoyed myself—giving a seminar is a good antidote to staring at the computer screen. And I remembered to mute the wireless microphone during the breaks—a minor triumph. As usual, … Read More

“Termination” and “Expiration”

During a recent in-house seminar, a participant took issue with one of my sample provisions, namely This agreement terminates on August 23, 2007. The participant argued that termination entails one or more parties’ ending a contract sooner than it otherwise would have ended; he said that in this case the correct word to use would have been expires. At the … Read More

A New “Or” Case!

Last Monday I posted this blog item about how St. John’s Law Review had published a new article by me and Alan Kaye entitled Revisiting the Ambiguity of “And” and “Or” in Legal Drafting. So when I discovered, courtesy of Howard Bashman via the (new) legal writer, that the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals had considered the meaning of or … Read More

Adding Electronic Signatures to Contracts

If you want to know more about what’s involved in adding an electronic signature to a contract, I suggest that you look at this post by Dennis Kennedy. In addition to links to some useful background information, it includes a link to a post by Adobe’s Rick Bornstein on creating and using signature stamps in Adobe Acrobat. My interest in … Read More

Lawyers as Writers

In this item that he posted on his blog last November, Wayne Schiess mentions that when he was a full-time practicing lawyer, he thought he was a good writer. He says he now realizes that he was quite mediocre and unaware of his limitations. He poses the following question: “Many practicing lawyers today believe themselves to be good writers, above … Read More

New Law Review Article on the Ambiguity of “And” and “Or”

St. John’s Law Review has just published my new article, Revisiting the Ambiguity of “And” and “Or” in Legal Drafting. My co-author is Alan S. Kaye, professor of English, comparative literature, and linguistics and director of the Laboratory of Phonetic Research at California State University, Fullerton. Click here to go to a copy of the article. Here’s the abstract: Most … Read More


It’s high time I tackled warranty and the related verb to warrant. Here’s my first stab at this topic. Background In this Business Law Today article and this follow-up blog post I demonstrate that it’s pointless and confusing to use the phrase represents and warrants (and representations and warranties) in a contract, or at least one governed by the law … Read More