I performed some work for a person without benefit of a written contract. There are still outstanding invoices and the person is severely delinquent. Now the person is asking for a contract and I am happy to oblige. Is it possible to add language to the contract that says all previous work (or at least the unpaid invoices) shall be governed by the new contract? I'm thinking of attorney fees, etc. Thanks.
1 Answer from Attorneys
Sure, you can address everything in the written contract, but it is not clear what this agreement is expected to cover. If you already provided the services and the client still owes payment then this is more of a settlement agreement rather than a master service agreement. You should have an MSA prepared for your business and make sure you always enter into a written contract to avoid misunderstandings and other issues. If you intend to provide ongoing services to the client then I would prepare an MSA with an exhibit that covers the outstanding balances owed.
If you need clarification, I suggest that you consult with a lawyer in private and discuss your objectives in more detail. You can start by calling around to several for a free phone consultation, get some insights then pick the best fit to work with.
If you would like to discuss further over a free phone consult, feel free to contact me anytime that is convenient.
Our firm is now referred by the American Bar Association (see under the New York section): http://www.americanbar.org/groups/delivery_legal_services/resources/programs_to_help_those_with_moderate_income.html
DISCLAIMER: this is not intended to be specific legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. No attorney-client relationship is formed on the basis of this posting.
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