How To Write a Contract Without a Lawyer
Legal documents may seem impossible to understand without the assistance of an expensive lawyer, but that doesn’t have to be the case. You can learn to write a contract on your own or, even better, use DoNotPay to generate contract templates for you!
How To Write a Legal Contract—Understanding the Basics
If you want to write a contract, you need to understand the essential elements of legal documents.
A legally binding contract is an official agreement between two parties. It ensures that both parties are responsible for holding their end of the bargain, or they have to suffer legal consequences. For this reason, all terms within a contract need to be negotiated and stated clearly so that both parties know what is expected of them.
In the table below, you’ll find six crucial elements of legally binding contracts:
|Elements Needed To Create a Contract||What They Mean|
|Goods, services, or property intended for exchange|
|One party’s acceptance of the offer|
|An agreement between two parties on the offer, terms, and purchase price|
|That which is bargained for between the parties, such as money, property, action, or inaction|
|The parties’ legal capacity to sign a contract, i.e., they are both adults and mentally sound|
|The contract’s compliance with the laws and regulations of the state in which it’s made|
When Do You Need a Contract?
People usually draw up a contract when they are:
- Offering or paying for services
- Buying or selling property
- Exchanging expensive items or supplies
You can also use contracts if you are hiring a construction crew, publishing a novel, or securing the confidentiality of your partner.
How To Draft a Contract on Your Own
The steps you need to take when writing a contract are:
- Identifying the parties involved
- Describing the exchange
- Including a confidentiality clause
- Providing the breach of contract details
- Leaving space for the signatures
Identify the Parties
The first clause in your contract should identify the parties. List your name and your partner’s name. If your contract is a business one, include the full legal title of your company.
Describe the Transaction
State what one party will give to the other and how much that will cost clearly. You should use simple language whenever possible to avoid confusion. The more details about the transaction you go into, the better your contract will look.
Include a Confidentiality Clause
You don't have to include a non-disclosure clause in your contract, but it’s a good idea that you do. For example, if you are running a small business, the clause makes sure your partner doesn’t disclose any trade secrets you shared with them during negotiation to other parties.
Specify the Breach of Contract Details
Include the date when the contract expires and describe what happens when one party terminates the contract before its expiration date. If there are any legal liabilities for breaking the contract terms, you should state them clearly.
Leaving Space for Signatures
Leave the last page of your contract for the signatures and the date when the agreement goes into effect.
How To Write Up a Contract—Bonus Tips
If you want your contract to be as professional as possible, you should:
- Include addenda—An addendum is a clause in legal documents that is reserved for any details that could not fit into the main sections. You can write details in the addenda when you draft your contract or during the negotiation process
- Check the legality of your contract—Laws and regulations on contracts can be different depending on the state you live in. Before signing your agreement, double-check if it’s in accordance with the law in your state
- Have a witness sign the document—In some instances, only you and your partner need to sign the contract to make it enforceable by law. You may want to consider inviting a witness to sign it too. The alternative is having the contract notarized. This step increases the validity of your contract should any legal disputes arise
How To Write a Contract With the Help of DoNotPay
Today, you need a legal document for small or major changes in your life. If you want to sell a car, purchase stocks, or even hire a photographer for your wedding, you’re safer if you negotiate the terms with the other party and sign an official document. All this doesn’t mean you can afford to lose time, nerves, or money on drawing up contracts yourself or having a lawyer do it.
DoNotPay created a feature that generates all kinds of contracts for you precisely because the modern lifestyle requires you to deal with them often.
Even when the official agreement is straightforward, why should you lose a day or an entire week researching the clauses and drafting them yourself when you can have it done for you in no time?
To have DoNotPay create a customized contract template for you, you only need to take these three steps:
- Log in to your account from any web browser
- Enter the name of the document you need in the search tab
- Follow our chatbot’s prompts
There you have it! You can now print and sign your contract with your partner to make it legally binding.
The best part is that DoNotPay doesn’t limit the number of contracts you can generate!
The Most Popular Legal Documents DoNotPay Generates
Some of the most common contracts DoNotPay can create for you in under a few minutes are:
- Intent to Purchase Real Estate
- Estoppel Certificate
- Prenuptial Agreement
- Independent Contractor Agreement
- LLC Operating Rules Document
- Quitclaim Deed
- General Affidavit
- General Business Contract
- Non-Disclosure Agreement
- Parenting Plan
- Residential Lease Agreement
- Bill of Sale
- Non-Compete Agreement
- Promissory Note
- Child Care Authorization Form
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