Why one template will never be enough
Why you'll need at least 3 documents per contract
There is no shortage of free or paid contract template providers online for anyone seeking some form of agreement. The UK government even offers example templates for the Non-Disclosure Agreement and Assured shorthold tenancy agreement. However, working with a trustworthy contract template is not always the safest or most useful option for the unlawyered. Moreover there are situations when a trustworthy template won't be sutiable such as with the model assured shorthold tenancy agreement. When using online templates, you might find yourself tackling the three Ts: tailoring, tracking and terms.
The first reason is that a template will inevitably require some form of tailoring to the specific situation it is being used for. For example, there are different types of tenancy agreements based on the duration, property and types of tenants and an NDA with a potential hire will require a different set of terms than with a potential customer. Choosing the wrong contract can result in not having the right protection or worse a vitiating factor.
The second reason is that a configured template is only one step of the process. Contracts need to be signed which often requires coordination and tracking via email which can be painful for the coordinator. Centralised contract management systems can help but are often not suitable for the unlawyered since they are designed for larger organisations or in-house legal teams.
Finally, whilst the legalese of a contract is essential for binding the terms together, it is not as useful to the unlawyered as the core terms themselves. This means that a spreadsheet with a summary of the contract’s key terms such as the start and end date is more useful than a pdf filled with paragraphs of text. However, the terms would need to be manually extracted from the template, and each time a new contract is initiated which isn’t practical either.
Choosing an end-to-end contracting platform which provides lawyer approved templates can save time whilst simultaneously preventing legal headaches. Legislate was built for the unlawyered to help them create and manage simple agreements without requiring a lawyer in the loop. Templates are easily configured within the platform and never need to be downloaded and shared since parties are invited to collaborate directly in Legislate.
Once the terms are agreed, contract data is automatically extracted from the agreements thanks to patent pending knowledge graph technology which means the unlawyered have complete visibility in their contracts and business.
The opinions on this page are for general information purposes only and do not constitute legal advice on which you should rely.
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