Having practised litigation work for more than 25 years, one would not be wrong to reduce the work to this simple formula: Someone has to win and someone has to lose. This is “binary”, meaning it is either a “1” or “0”.
However, this approach to contracts negotiation is not only unhelpful but “toxic”. We often hear our clients wanting to conduct contractual negotiations without lawyers because they believe that lawyers are “deal breakers”. There may be some truth to this.
As lawyers, we are trained to compete like gladiators. This “gladiatorial” approach to contracts negotiation leads to 1 inch thick draft legal agreements that are so watertight and so weighed in favour of one party that no relationship can ever be formed.
This problem does not fall squarely on the shoulders of lawyers alone. We have come across clients who deliberately want their lawyers to draft such one-sided agreements as they believe that they are so “big” that everyone else will have to take their terms, otherwise risk losing the business opportunity altogether.
We have always maintained that ‘BUSINESS IS ABOUT RELATIONSHIPS’
In order to foster and grow any relationship, we believe that all draft contracts should start on a’as neutral a basis’ This is so that the other party has some room to ‘win’ as well. This approach is often referred to as a “win-win” approach. In fact, it takes more skill to draft such “win-win” contracts. Your lawyer will be required to exercise all his skill and experience to balance your interests against what you might have to give up, without exposing you to unreasonable risks.
Vanillalaw™ agreements reflect those values and wisdom honed through more than 25 years of ground experience. Even so, no template can ever achieve the level of refinement as those which comes from the minds and hands of experienced lawyers. A well drafted and balanced first draft will go a lot to save the time and costs of the master craftsman.
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