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Contracts & Agreements: Small Print, Big Details

When planning an event you are undoubtedly going to enter into contracts and/or agreements for services. Depending on what kind of event you are planning this could be as simple as a rental contract for a tent or chocolate fountain, or as complex as a facility use agreement or performance contract for an entertainer. Because you are signing your name and entering into legal agreements, you need to be aware of the obligations and consequences of doing so. It is absolutely vital that you read and understand the agreements you are signing so you don’t find yourself caught off guard if there is any kind of problem or issue.

Here is some advice from Brian Lukasavitz of the Lukasavitz Law Group, LLC.

Whether you are planning a backyard event for a small group or coordinating an outdoor festival for thousands, understanding performance and vendor contracts can be challenging but crucial, especially if something goes wrong. As an attorney that specializes in contracts for the arts and entertainment industry, I am all too familiar with agreements that are poorly drafted. With every performance or vendor contract it is crucial for the planner to understand the terms of what should happen if the event is cancelled. My contracts include clauses that stipulate how situations are to be handled should there be a cancellation. It is important for the planner to appreciate the timing and repercussions on the decision to cancel. My advice for planners is to carefully review what those clauses require based on who cancels, when they cancel and what percentage of fees are to be paid (if any) depending on how the cancellation occurs.

Every contract or agreement has its own particular nuances, but the goal of each contract is the same; to set the terms for each entity as to how to fulfill the terms of the agreement when all goes as planned, but also how to resolve unexpected issues that may arise, should things not go as planned.  When drafting contracts, I begin by getting as much information about the event as possible.  Once it is established how the agreement is intended to be executed, my goal is to also include as many provisions for the reasonably anticipated “what-ifs”.  No one wants to think about how the agreement could fall-apart, but it is important in the contract to include terms for how both parties agree to resolve issues when the worst-case scenario plays out during your event.

Lukasavitz Law Group, LLC is a local firm that specializes in working with small for-profit and non-profit businesses and start-ups. As a small business-owner, Brian Lukasavitz is no stranger to the challenges organizations face with regard to municipality filings, trademark and copyright and a wide variety of contracts and human resources issues and documentation. Lukasavitz Law Group, LLC can assist organizations strategize the most effective and cost-effective ways to become establish themselves, protect their organization interests and continue to develop and expand. Brian can be contacted at 218.310.4530 or blukasavitzllg@gmail.com