Importance of Contract Checklists

You have to have a system for managing your flow of work in the office.  On construction projects, this means for every project you bid or negotiate, you have to know the framework of what your client expects.  That expectation is generally (hopefully) captured in a written contract.

Each contract, however, is not an island unto itself.  The terms and conditions have to work with your organization and how you function.  If your contracts all contain different terms, different notice provisions, different lien requirements, different payment terms, different indemnification terms, etc., you will never be able to reasonably manage your responsibilities (especially legal responsibilities) on these projects.  Something will slip through the cracks.

One of the most effective things you can do for your organization is to develop a simple contract checklist which outlines the most important terms to you in all of your contracts.  Whenever a new contract comes in, you can check off the provisions that you need to ensure your systems continue to work correctly.

In addition, simple contract checklists are invaluable when you are actually working the project as a quick reference to determine how to respond to urgent situations.  For example, if you need to know quickly what type of notice you need to provide for delay damages or requests for information.  If you have filled out a simple contract checklist at the beginning of the project, you can quickly reference the information you need to successfully manage your client’s expectations.

I spend a significant part of my practice reviewing and providing checklists for contracts.  Let me know if you need any assistance in setting up this system for you.

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