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Negotiating, Drafting and Managing Commercial Contracts

Programme Outline
Day 1
What is the “deal” behind the contract, and how do you get there?

  • What constitutes a contract?
  • How to structure commercial arrangements
  • Innovative commercial solutions (e.g. Partnering, “BOOT” contracts etc)
  • How to negotiate a contractual structure
  • Basic techniques for negotiation
  • How to document discussions
  • Relationship between negotiation and contract drafting
  • Closing a deal
  • Dealing with difficult negotiators

Day 2
Drafting contracts

  • Using standard forms
  • Developing your own standards
  • Modifying forms
  • Dealing with contract qualifications and amendments
  • Structuring complex documents

Negotiating contracts

  • “Level playing field” issues – how to be fair to more than one bidder
  • Dealing with errors in a bid
  • Negotiating complex wording
  • Formalities to finalise the contract
  • Authority to sign

Day 3
Drafting specific clauses

  • Performance of the work
  • Title
  • Risk
  • Intellectual property
  • Variations
  • To the contract
  • To the scope of work
  • Extension of time
  • Force majeure
  • Time for completion
  • Liquidated damages and penalties
  • Acceptance and testing
  • Termination and suspension
  • Law of the contract and dispute resolution

Day 4 
Management of contracts

  • Risk assessment and management
  • Kick-off meetings
  • Assignment of responsibilities
  • Setting and managing expectations
  • Planning
  • Reporting – being realistic with requirements
  • Progress meetings and expediting
  • Dealing with defaults
  • Dealing with external factors (e.g. force majeure)
  • Recognising and managing change
  • To the contract terms
  • To the scope of work
  • Payment issues – including international trade
  • Close out
  • Lessons learned

Day 5
Dealing with disputes

  • Recognising potential problems
  • Dealing with issues as they arise
  • Legal rights and commercial outcomes distinguished
  • Negotiation structures for internal dispute resolution
  • Types of external dispute resolution
  • Litigation
  • Arbitration
  • Adjudication
  • Expert Determination
  • Mediation
  • Issues with different legal systems
  • Enforcement of awards
  • Management of disputes
  • Avoiding disputes in the first place




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