Have you adapted your post-COVID practice to better plan for the “unexpected” ? In particular, have you looked at–and revised– your professional services contracts to give yourself a little more breathing room for unaccounted issues that may arise? If not, no time like the present.
Don’t like that saying? How about ” a stitch in time saves nine?” No? Still nothing? What about a picture of something so completely unexpected it shocks you– say, a fireman commuting home, in fire-fighting regalia, on a tricycle? Okay, here you go…
Now that I have your attention– you should make it a practice to regularly review and update your professional services agreements, and you should consider issues such as:
- Does your agreement provide for extra compensation if you have to spend more time or a longer period providing construction administration services for material delays or labor shortages? If not, it should.
- Does your agreement have a well-written “act of God” provision– one that includes pandemic/epidemics as part of the “act of God” conditions in which a term may become void? If not, add it now!
- Have you considered whether you want arbitration instead of litigation if a lawsuit does arise? And if you want to arbitrate, does your contract give specifics, like how many arbitrators will decide the case? These things can be added now with little effort, or you can pay your lawyer to negotiate them down the line. Guess which is cheaper?
You *do* have a good, solid contract to begin with, correct? If not, I’ve previously given examples of how to craft helpful scopes of services and how to add the protection of a well-crafted exclusion to your scope of services. Check them out, and be ready for the next biker-fireman surprise in your future.