Does Contract Drafting Make You Sad?

Today I saw the following tweet:

Here’s how I responded:

The smiley in my tweet was to indicate that I was being facetious. Why was I being facetious? Because the process of drafting contracts, as it’s traditionally handled, would make anyone sad: You find, or are given, a precedent contract or template of questionable quality and relevance, and you copy it, making whatever adjustments are required to reflect the new deal and your standards. That takes time and involves varying amounts of frustration and uncertainty. In fact, the higher your standards, the greater your frustration and uncertainty is likely to be. You’re left with a bad case of the sads.

That’s why I’ll continue in my efforts to commoditize the process of drafting business contracts. Endlessly reinventing a wobbly wheel is a colossal waste of time and money. It also hurts an organization’s competitiveness and causes it to assume unnecessary risk.

About the author

Ken Adams is the leading authority on how to say clearly whatever you want to say in a contract. He’s author of A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting, and he offers online and in-person training around the world. He’s also chief content officer of LegalSifter, Inc., a company that combines artificial intelligence and expertise to assist with review of contracts.

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