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  • Writer's pictureKristen Shields

Misconception Correction: Work Order as a Contract

One misconception is that a work order is not a legally binding contract. In most states, all you need to create a legally binding contract is an offer to do something for a specified price and an acceptance of that offer. A work order or a mere proposal can contain the ingredients such that if the customer accepts, even verbally, you have a legally binding contract. The ever popular handshake agreement can also fall into this category, binding both you and the person on the other side of the transaction. If either party fails to follow through with what was promised, he could potentially face a claim.

Many people think of a "contract" as a written document that contains two signatures. On large projects or commercial jobs, this is most often the case, but many of you work on residential projects where you're managing a higher volume of jobs and in a more informal fashion to not scare off the customer.

Solution: The "Short Form" = a brief service agreement, roughly 2 pages, that has the nuts and bolts required by your state and that you need especially in the event of nonpayment but that does not intimidate the customer. The Short Form is the sweet spot between not having anything written, which opens you up to the "he said v. she said" issue, and presenting too long of a document that disclaims so much that the customer thinks you're going to rip them off or not do a good job.

Contact Us for your Short Form today because All For Contractors is All For You!

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