Terms and Conditions
Many businesses now use Standard Terms and Conditions (STCs) as their document of choice to record the basis on which they sell their goods or services. It’s common practice not to get STCs signed but, instead, to refer to them in sales documents or to just send a copy to the customer. This method of contracting does present legal risks, the key one being that the supplier’s STCs may not actually apply at all – the sting in the tail often being that the purchaser’s STCs govern the sale instead.
In an ideal world, signatures are preferable but the commercial reality is quite different and, as always, the solution will often be a compromise.
Having a simple contracting strategy in place is a really good way of channelling the focus and resources of your business as it allows you to decide when a signed STC, or even an individually negotiated contract, is needed. In essence, this is really about the business making informed decisions based on its assessment of risk.