Contract Documents on a Clipboard with Glasses and Pen

Here at Saxton Law Firm – we specialize in small business litigation – and an important part of that is writing, understanding and helping you and your business adhere to contracts. We continue to get many questions about small business law and a common question that we get asked is – do I need my contract in writing? We can help answer that question and many more at Saxton Law Firm to help you better understand small business contracts.

Do All Business Contracts Need to Be in Writing?

Business People Shaking Hands Over a Contract

Business contracts can be complicated and many business owners have the expectation that a contract must be written to be binding. That is not the case. Valid contracts can be written or oral – unless it is a specific type of contract or state law requires it to be written. The State of Missouri requires that a few types of contracts must be in written form to be valid and those types of contracts pertain to – marriage contracts, debt of a probate representative, land sales and contracts that apply to agreements that cannot be performed in one year. To be a valid written contract, a contract does not need to be signed by both parties and must only be signed by the individual, group or business that would be charged.

Why Should You Have Your Contract in Writing?

You may not NEED to have your contract in writing – but that doesn’t mean that it is a bad idea. When you have a written contract, it gives each party named in the contract a clearcut understanding of the contract and their obligations outlined in it. This gives business owners a chance to ask questions about the details of the contract and gives you the opportunity to enlist the help of Saxton Law Firm to determine if there are any issues with the contract. If a lawsuit is filed pertaining to the contract, a written contract provides the court with the exact and precise language of the contract, so you do not have to rely on individual interpretations of the contract in court.

What Elements Must Be Present in Every Business Contract?

When a contract is written, there are elements that MUST be included in the contract – an offer, an acceptance, competent parties and consideration. A competent party just means an individual, group or business that correctly understands the consequences of signing a legal contract. Consideration is a legal term that is common in business contracts and means the exchange of products and services between parties named in the contract.

READ MORE: What Should I Do if Customers Are Not Paying Bills?

Do you have questions about small business litigation and contracts? Saxton Law Firm can help answer your questions. Questions like – do I need my contract in writing? Contact Saxton Law Firm today for a FREE legal consultation!