Chief Concern: Contracts and an Eye on the End
As most fans of the Kansas City Chiefs are now aware, the Chiefs have fired head coach Romeo Crennel and general manager Scott Pioli after another disappointing season. While many fans celebrated the transition to new leadership of the organization, most probably did not pay much attention to the steps that the Chiefs organization had to take to make that transition possible. This provides a strong reminder of the importance of keeping an eye on the end of a contract when entering into a business relationship.
Just like the Chiefs with Crennel and Pioli, many Wichita businesses enter new business relationships with great enthusiasm and optimism. However, many do not consider how the relationship will work if things go badly. Few people want to think about how to end a relationship when it’s starting out, but as a practical matter, it will seldom be as easy to negotiate termination provisions as it is when entering into the relationship. While this topic may make some uncomfortable, failing to address termination of a business relationship can prove very costly.
A good business attorney can help its corporate clients understand what termination issues to consider when entering a business relationship, such as (i) when a contract can be terminated, (ii) who can terminate the contract, (iii) under what circumstances the contract can be terminated, (iv) what happens to the ownership of certain property such as customer lists, patents, copyrights and trademarks which may have been created by the business partner or employee, and (v) what restrictions will be placed on activities such as competition and solicitation of employees and customers after the termination of the agreement.
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