One thing that no business owner enjoys is being taken to court because of a contract dispute. Not only do contract disputes place a stress on the business owner, they can also affect the financial situation of the company. The business owner will likely have to miss work and could have to hire an attorney as the dispute moves forward.
Is there a way to protect my company from contract disputes?
While there is no totally effective way to stop contract disputes from occurring, there is an inexpensive way to keep your company protected. When you sign a contract or agreement, have the signatures notarized by a notary public. This prevents a person from being able to deny that he or she signed the contract.
Why is having a document notarized so important?
When a notary public notarizes a document, the signature is automatically authenticated in federal courts and some state courts, including California. By not having to authenticate the signature on a document, you can save your business a considerable amount of money and time.
What is a notary public?
A notary public is someone who is allowed by either the county or state government to witness a person's signature in an official capacity. This person has a special commission that gives them this ability.
Having documents notarized is a simple precaution business owners can take to minimize the risk of a contract dispute. Still, there are likely going to be instances in which contract disputes and other legal issues occur. Being prepared when they occur is vital for all business owners.
Source: Entrepreneur, "Avoiding Contract Disputes" Chris Kelleher, Dec. 28, 2014