-Written by Nicole Skorik

To sign a contract is like to outline all of your “must have” in a favorite “Wish List”, thereby people free their brain from unnecessary work of remembering everything, to simply empower the signed paperwork.

Some psychology books or the “Goal Setting Master Classes” of popular mentors say all your “want to” must be written. We enthusiastically write goals for the year, “to do list” for the day and even “letters of forgiveness” to someone you care, which doesn’t seem a waste of time. However, we don’t apply the same to sign an important document that we constantly encounter – “the Contract”.

Nowadays, elements of the “Contract” are found everywhere, whether to sign a service receipt, or to put a checkmark in the “Accept” before chatting in messengers. However, people are not attentive and responsible for what they are signing.

From here the problems begin. Based on cultural differences, people shouldn’t rely on “handshakes” or a verbal “YES”, because not everything is clear and can be taken in different ways. In Slavic culture, “YES” is a guarantor of the implementation of any processes; the Chinese “Yes” does not always mean to consent: it can mean “Yes”, “no”, or “maybe”, because in Chinese culture it is not customary to say “no”, especially in business relationships for fear that denial might undermine the cooperation in general. Understanding and adapting to cultural differences becomes a useful tool in business organizations in China.

Furthermore, most of business people don’t want to spend time making a contract. However, to make a good contract is not simple or quick, and the way to make it will shape the future business relationships and achievement.

One thing needs to be remembered: Everything that is not written in the contract does not exist.

Therefore, before shaking hands or making a deal, make sure the lawyers have described all the points of your Contract, especially detailing the key points.

Example: “I want to terminate the lease!”

Reason: Landlord does not follow the contract, so I want to terminate and ask for Deposit back.

Party A has concluded the contract with the Citizen B on house leasing. After checking the premise and identified damages, B signed the contract and paid the deposit. After B moved in, it turned out that when raining, the water leaked into the roof of the balcony, which was made of glasses. According to the contract, the landlord is obliged to repair within two weeks.

The landlord sent the repairman to help fix the roof several times, but they couldn’t fix it because the construction was not a personal case but up to the city administrative level, so they need to collect signatures of all residents in the same area and report to the government.

Technically the problem was not solved, but the terms of the contract were not violated. On one hand, the landlord has contributed to fix; on the other hand, “Force majeure” or “Additional conditions” on the termination of the contract was not written.

This is only one example of how people create problems for themselves just because they didn’t pay enough attention on what they have signed.

There are many hidden rules and nuances that govern everyday life especially when people residing in another country. When people try to communicate in a language that is not their native tongue, they often believe that the word, the phrase or the sentence has one and only one meaning – that they intend to transfer. In order to avoid cultural misunderstandings, unpleasant situations and the loss of funds, in the matter of daily communication, transactions or business organization, do not ignore such an important thing as the Contract. Don’t forget to read the content of what you are signing and choose the right lawyer to cope with different situations.

 For more information about drafting a contract, please write to our lawyers: info@dandreapartners.com

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