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post #16 of 19

For the food industry in Chicago, your word is your contract. You agree verbally (or not), you're held to it or no one will do business with you. If you needed written contracts to cover everyday business transactions around here, your business would come to a grinding halt. We pay lawyers to read over anything we sign........... and we don't pay lawyers to over see our everyday business transactions. It would add too much money on to the cost of doing business.

post #17 of 19

I'm not trying to be argumentative here but maybe the difference of opinion is whether a lawyer needs to review it in order to consider it a contract. 

 

Documenting your agreement and having both parties sign the document is sufficient in the situation the OP is inquiring about, at least in the beginning.  This is a contract, whether an attorney reviews it and puts in all of the legalese speak or not.

 

I'm not suggesting getting an attorney to review every business transaction.  This is hardly cost effective since most business transactions will go off without a hitch and most people honor their word.  Where a written agreement comes in handy is when things don't go so well or there are disputes that couldn't have been or simply weren't anticipated before the transaction was initiated.

 

Whether every aspect of the written agreement between parties is legally enforceable is really irrelevant.  Having an agreement signed by both parties shows intent to form a business relationship and intent to be bound by certain terms and that IS enforceable.  Try going to small claims court with a he said/she said verbal agreement.  Chances are much more likely that the case will be dismissed or any reward will be denied/diminished if you don't have an agreement in writing that documents your case.  In addition, the written agreement sometimes is all you need to force the other party to honor your agreement without going to court.  I'd rather have a signed piece of paper than someone's word any day.  I've been on the losing side of a verbal "contract" dispute in court.

post #18 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stitches View Post

For the food industry in Chicago, your word is your contract. You agree verbally (or not), you're held to it or no one will do business with you. If you needed written contracts to cover everyday business transactions around here, your business would come to a grinding halt. We pay lawyers to read over anything we sign........... and we don't pay lawyers to over see our everyday business transactions. It would add too much money on to the cost of doing business.
You don't need to sign a new contract for each delivery if you have a wholesale customer, but when you start the account it is in your best interest to have a written contract indicating what you will be delivering/how often you will deliver it/liability releases/etc.

For everyday transactions you should still get a signed copy of the invoice as proof of delivery.
post #19 of 19

Just be careful... wholesale is different, and packaging something for resale falls under different guidelines than just selling a cake for a single event.  I know that if we want to transport any resale items over state lines it HAS to be in a refrigerated van and falls under the FDA whereas a cake made for a wedding does not.  Not that you are transporting over state lines, but even at the very basic you need labels for everything and you would be dealing with meal tax along with any state taxes involved.  You should contact your state health dept or dept of agriculture and find out the guidlines specific to your state.

 

You should have the basics of the deal spelled out to avoid any confusion.  Your word being your bond is great, but your word written down and signed by both parties will actually protect you (and your business partners). 

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