Be Prepared For Your Meeting - Understanding Contract Terms

Learning essential business English is important when discussing and understanding contract options. This can be useful when during business deals or even in matters of employment.

Here are some important terms to know:

  1. A ‘binding contract’ – this is a contract which cannot be stopped or legally broken. We will need to draw up a legally binding contract before we can conduct business together.
    The contract is legally binding and means you must supply us with these services.

  2. An ‘exclusive contract’ – this prevents the person signing the contract from working with other people.
    You will have an exclusive contract with us which forbids you to work for anyone else.
    We wish to offer you an exclusive contract if you are happy to accept it.

  3. A ‘renewable contract’ – this is a contract that can be continued or extended after its initial expiry date has finished.
    We do not have renewable contracts in this company and can only give you a one-year contract.
    The contract is renewable after you have finished a six-month period and we are satisfied with your work.

  4. A ‘temporary contract’ – this type of contract is for a fixed period and is not permanent.
    We will offer you a three-month temporary contract.
    You’ll start on a temporary contract and we may offer you a permanent contract when it finishes.

  5. A ‘valid contract’ – this is a contract that has a legal force.
    The contract will be valid once both parties have signed it.
    The letter that was sent was not a valid contract.

  6. A ‘breach of contract’ - this occurs when a person does something that breaks one of the terms of the contract.
    You will be in breach of contract if you refuse to work overtime.
    It will be a breach of contract if deliveries aren’t received on time.

  7. Terms of contract’ – these are the conditions which are spoken of and agreed on in the contract.
    The terms of the contract say you must provide 10 deliveries a month.
    Your request is something that is not stated in the terms of the contract.

  8. Draw up’ a contract – this means the contract is created and written.
    I will draw up a contract after our meeting
    Will you draw up a new contract for me?

  9. ‘Go through’ a contract – this means looking at a contract in detail.
    We will sit down and go through the contract.
    It’s important to go through the contract carefully before signing it.

  10. ‘Get out of a contract’ – this means ending the contract agreement.
    There are a few options for getting out of the contract.
    Is there a legal way to get out of the contract?

If you are interested in mastering your business English, consider taking an ESL class which focuses on teaching the essentials you will need for understanding business matters in various situations. Opt for an intensive program in the USA which teaches essential business English in as little as three weeks.

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Rachel Clarkson
Rachel Clarkson is an English teacher at LCI English ESL Programs and blogger at the ESL Blog.