Moving your business forward is not always done in structured meetings in a conference room. Sometimes doing business can be a complex and fluid process.
Rather than negotiating in an office, you might discuss terms over a round of golf or while you are having cocktails. In these instances, you may reach an agreement but not have a formal document that includes the details.
Here’s what you should know about oral agreements and how you can protect your business’s interests.
Document the conversation
Recording what you discussed during a casual conversation (that you may need to enforce) does not have to be complicated. You can simply send the other person an email thanking them for joining you and outlining the essential details of your discussion.
When you document your discussion and send it to the other person, it gives them a chance to review the contents and suggest changes if they remember the conversation differently. By ironing out differences right after the conversation, you can avoid a dispute in the future.
Memorialize the agreement
In some cases, it can feel awkward to ask for a contract stating the terms you discussed in a more casual setting. The other party may also ask to keep your deal on more relaxed terms.
While some situations with more informal oral agreements end up ok, others can become a legal nightmare to prove and resolve. When you take the time to get the deal in writing, you are taking an extra step to ensure that both parties understand the terms of the bargain.