Every day, businesses in Louisiana and elsewhere enter into agreements. To make these agreements legally enforceable, a contract is drafted and signed by the parties involved. Typically, the purpose of the agreement is memorialized through the terms of the contract; however, these terms are sometimes unclear or even sometimes not followed. Therefore, to ensure a proper and workable contract is entered into, it is important to understand what steps are needed to make an enforceable contract.

What is a contract and what makes it enforceable? A contract is defined as a legally enforceable agreement that creates an obligation to do something or not to do something between two or more parties. A party to a contract can be an individual person, a company or a corporation.

When it comes to proving that a contract is legally enforceable, three factors must exist. There must first be an offer. An offer describes the terms of the agreement and they must be definite and certain. Next, there must be an acceptance. This must be a clear expression of acceptance to the terms of the offer. Finally, there must be consideration. This is often described as a bargained-for-exchange. Simply put, it means that each of the parties to the contract will gain some form of benefit from the agreement.

When a contract is not properly developed or entered into, this could present issues between the parties. If the terms are not clear and definite or there was a breach of contract by a party, this is likely to result in a contract dispute. Thus, a harmed party is likely to take legal action to recover damages from the breach or dispute.

Those dealing with a contract dispute should understand what rights they have in the matter. An attorney can guide people through the process of handling a contract dispute claim, and help to protect their rights and interests along the way.

Source: Findlaw.com, “Contracts and the Law,” accessed Jan. 1, 2017