From marriages to car purchases, people are always looking for the security of legal contracts. When parties back out of arrangements that have not yet been made official, there is little recourse except to learn a lesson and move on. When it comes to massive projects like building a skyscraper, contracts are usually signed before the work is even planned, adding a layer of protection for builders.
Contract disputes are mostly settled out of court, with options for mediation with a conflict resolution professional or a settlement out of court before a jury would render a verdict. But a recent study shows that contract disputes in construction cases are getting longer and harder to solve.
Differences of opinion on how to sort out contract disputes in North America already took longer than global averages; the figure rose more than 10% from 2016 to 2017. Errors in contracts or omissions from them were the leading cause of disputes, with poor administration and failures on the owners’ parts as the next most likely causes.
The best way to avoid disputes was shown to be reviewing the specifications of a contract before it is signed. Willingness to compromise in these situations adds understanding and may cut the costs of expensive contract dispute resolution practices. Early resolution has been shown to be more than 80% effective in preventing further disputes.
Preventing or solving a contract dispute is often easier when parties have legal representation. Attorneys can help write a contract that is less likely to be disputed, as well as fix up any problems with an existing dispute.