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Contract Drafting Errors That Cause Litigation

8:25        Registration

8:55        Welcome and Introductions

9:00        How Courts Assess Ambiguity

This session explores:
•  The court's 5 options in an ambiguous contract case
•  50 cases surveyed from 2021 state and federal court decisions, the survey says:
   ◦  The 3 most commonly litigated types of provisions in 2021
   ◦  The 3 drafting errors mostly likely to cause litigation
•  3 keys to eliminating contextual ambiguity

10:00      Break

10:10      Examples of Embarrassing Errors Good Lawyers Made With Definitions That Caused Litigation in 2021 Cases

Learn the basic rules for drafting definitions, when to use integrated verses autonomous definitions, when autonomous definitions are best and how definitions improve the text.

11:10      Break

11:20      Examples of the 5 Most Common Phrasing Patterns That Cause Litigation

Avoid phrasing pattern pitfalls. This session highlights:
•  What does this word modify?
•  What does this phrase modify?
•  What is the foregoing?
•  Which provision controls?

12:20      Adjourn


What types of contractual provisions get litigated most frequently? Which drafting errors appear most often in ambiguous contract cases? Our speaker conducted a methodical survey of 50 state and federal ambiguous contract cases decided in 2021 to determine the answers to these questions (and others).


  • Lenné Eidson Espenschied

    Lenné Eidson Espenschied has earned her status as one of the two most popular contract drafting speakers in the U.S. by continually striving for excellence and providing innovative, practical skills-based training for transactional lawyers.

    Lenné practiced law in Atlanta, Georgia, for 25 years, focusing on corporate and transactional representation of technology-based businesses. She is the author of two books published by the American Bar Association: Contract Drafting: Powerful Prose in Transactional Practice (ABA Fundamentals, 3rd Ed. 2019) and The Grammar and Writing Handbook for Lawyers (ABA Fundamentals, 2011).

    Her passion is helping lawyers acquire the skills they need to be successful in transactional practice.

    Click here for more information about Lenné.

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February 15, 2022
Tue 8:25 AM EST
NC Bar Center Cary

Duration 3H 55M

No longer available for purchase
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