If you own a small business and take pride in the small-town feel of a community that works together, you probably have several associates you have worked with for years. While it is nice to have business owners who promote each other’s products and services, it is always wise to keep a modern business sense. At the Law Offices of Levi Williams, P.A., we are prepared to answer the questions of Florida business owners who wish to avoid contract disputes.
Let us say that you have taken over the deli that your grandfather opened several decades ago. Back in an era when one’s handshake meant the same as a written contract, your grandfather and his associates may have had verbal agreements to help each other out. You might have continued this tradition, but what happens if there is a disagreement over an old arrangement? For example, the new owner of a local butcher who supplies the meat for your shop’s sandwiches no longer wishes to trade services – and because he has also raised his prices, he wants to be compensated for the amount of last month’s trade.
You may agree to pay him for the meat now instead of making a trade, but you disagree over having to repay the difference. However, you do not have a written contract for your shops’ former agreement. You may have difficulty defending your side if the new shop owner decides to take you to small claims court. According to USA Today, verbal contracts may hold up in court, but they are notoriously difficult to prove.
As you can see, it may be in your best interests to have a contract for your business arrangements, but you do not have to sacrifice your longstanding friendships or agreements to do so. As our page on contract law explains, it is possible to create concise and fair contracts for a wide range of business matters.