If you're a Pennsylvania construction contractor, you need to be good at writing Pennsylvania
Once installed on your Windows computer, Construction Contract Writer will make it easy to draft enforceable Pennsylvania contracts that fit your jobs precisely and avoid the penalties imposed by Pennsylvania and federal law.
- Pennsylvania's Home Improvement Consumer Protection Act requires that a long list of disclosures appear in the contract such as start and finish dates, names and addresses of subs, insurance coverage and a phone number for the Pennsylvania Bureau of Consumer Protection. Any contract which omits these disclosures is void and unenforceable. The Act also makes unenforceable any contract that includes one of eleven clauses commonly found in some home improvement contracts. Failure to comply with the Act is an unfair trade practice and gives an owner the right to recover three times actual damages plus attorney fees. Failure to comply is also a misdemeanor if the contract is for $2,000 or less. If for more than $2,000, violation is a third degree felony. Penalties are higher for repeat violations and if the owner is 60 years old or more. Failure to get a change order in writing carries the same civil and criminal penalties.
- An arbitration clause in a contract is not enforceable if it omits certain issues or is in text face (rather than bold type).
- The Home Improvement Finance Act requires several disclosures, including disclosure of the right of rescission and a statement in 10-point bold type directly above the signature of the owner. A fine of up to $500 can be imposed for a first violation. Second and later violations earn the same fine plus a year in jail. In addition, the district attorney is authorized to seek an injunction against the contractor. Any violation of that injunction carries a penalty of up to $1,000.
- Failure to make federal truth in lending disclosures requires restitution of the overcharge.
- Failure to include the disclosures required by 12 Code of Federal Regulations 226.15 extends the right of rescission to three years (rather than three days).
- Omitting insulation disclosures required by 16 Code of Federal Regulation 460 can result in an $11,000 fine.
When a job goes bad, you better have an iron-clad contract. Consider what happens if you get into a dispute before collecting final payment. An attorney for the other side won't be impressed with your two-page "legal in all 50 states" contract. Most likely, you'll discover that the signed agreement is either partially or totally unenforceable under state law. Game over! You lose. You're not going to collect another dime on that job. Fortunately, there's a better way.
Just answer a series of questions -- like an interview -- to construct a legal contract for each project you take on. Construction Contact Writer explains in plain English what you need to know before answering an interview question. If you know the job and you know what the job requires, Construction Contract Writer will do the rest.
Whether you are writing commercial or residential construction contracts, you'll be able to anticipate where disputes could arise and settle them in the contract before they happen. Then include the warranty protection you intend, the payment schedule, and create subcontracts from the prime contract.
Resolve key issues in your favor with bias control.
Many contract clauses in Construction Contract Writer suggest a bias that favors either the owner, the contractor or the subcontractor. That allows you to shift burden or risk to a particular party. Want to draft a contract that protects the property owner? No problem. Need an aggressive contract that pushes the limits in your favor? That's easy. Of course, if you just want a balanced and fair contract, Construction Contract Writer will do that too.
Need legal help drafting a contract?
Construction Contract Writer even includes a feedback button to an attorney on the Craftsman Book Co. staff to help if you get stumped. This service is free, and you can expect a response within 24 hours.
When you're done, save the contract for future use or modification at a later date. Print contracts directly or export to MS Word or Adobe PDF for electronic delivery or archiving on disk.
Construction contract law changes. But don't worry -- updates are available! Your contracts have to change to stay in compliance. That's why Construction Contract Writer includes an Update button. You'll be invited to click Update when a change affects the contracts you're drafting. A connection to the Web is required.
Even experienced construction contract attorneys will find plenty of useful reference material in Construction Contract Writer.
Construction Contract Writer cites local court decisions and code sections relevant to key interview questions.