There are several essential elements in a contract packaging agreement. These are elements whose absence in such an agreement could prove problematic in case the agreement is contested at some point.
Many of these are elements are considered essential in all types of contracts: not just those meant to cover contract packaging agreements. Others are unique to this particular type of contracts.
We may clarify that the contract packing agreement in question here is one that is usually gotten into by a manufacturer and a contract packer. It is typically to the effect that, in exchange for a certain sum of money, the contract packer is to package (and maybe distribute) products on the manufacturer’s behalf.
Even if you have retained a legal practitioner to help you with the crafting of this sort of contract (which you should), you’d still need to check the contract they ultimately come up with to ensure that it has all of the said elements.
Sometimes, lawyers – just like all other professionals – overlook essential things: and it is upon the client to point them out. If the omission was deliberate, the legal practitioner will explain why he or she opted to omit what you consider an essential element in the contract.
Essential elements in a contract packaging agreement include:
The full names of the parties getting into the agreement. These would be the names of the manufacturer and the contract packer, as they appear on their respective business registration certificates (or licenses).
A contract without this would look comical, and would be utterly unenforceable. Yet we keep on seeing people making such contracts.
The date of the agreement. This is the date on which the contract is entered into. It may look unimportant, until the contract is contested and you realize that you can’t really tell a court to treat an undated contract seriously!
The time period covered by the agreement. If this is not present, any party to the contract who finds a better way to do things may opt to pull out at a moment’s notice, to the other party’s detriment.
An enumerated summary of what has been agreed upon. If the summary is not enumerated, the various issues in it may come across as ‘just a single point.’ While at it, you also need to ensure that care is taken in the crafting of the clauses that deal with midway alteration of terms.
Exit clauses. All contracts must have exit clauses. These must be fair to both parties, and not oppressive (because if they are perceived as oppressive by a court, the whole contract would be deemed oppressive and therefore unenforceable).
Signatures and names of the people who sign on behalf of both parties. The signatures alone are not enough (as many people seem to suppose). It is only when a signature has the name of the person who entered it below it or somewhere else that it becomes binding.
Signatures and names of witnesses to the agreement. In most of these cases, the lawyers overseeing the agreement serve as the witnesses. Their names, the names of the law firms they come from, and their personal signatures should appear there. Then, in case one party contests the agreement, it would be pointed out that they entered into the contract packing agreement with proper legal advice. That would be evidenced by their lawyer’s signature, as appended to the contract packing agreement.