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Home Q&A Forum Business contract with a termination fee?

Contracts

Business Contract

North Carolina

Asked on Sep 24, 2023

Business contract with a termination fee?

I am currently in the process of starting a business and I have been presented with a contract that includes a termination fee. I am not sure what obligations I have with respect to this fee and I would like to know what kind of legal implications I may be subject to in the event of a termination. I am also interested in exploring the potential for negotiation of this fee in order to ensure that I am not overpaying for services that I may no longer need.

1 Attorney answer

Answer

Contracts

North Carolina

Answered 292 days ago

N'kia N.

ContractsCounsel verified

Business Lawyer
Licensed in North Carolina
Free Consultation

A termination fee is a payment that one party to a contract pays the other party for terminating the contract before it expires. The general purpose is to compensate the non-terminating party for resources used and/or opportunities missed as a result of entering into the contract that is then terminated early. A well-written termination fee clause will typically include the exact fee to be paid or, if not exact, a clear explanation of how the fee is to be calculated. Additionally, it will include a timeline for the payment(s). Unless the terms of the contract are otherwise contrary to law, the terminating party is presumed to be responsible for paying the stated sum at the stated time. While it is common for a business contract to contain a termination fee clause, a termination fee that is unreasonable under the circumstances is at risk of not being enforceable. However, disputing a termination fee clause can require a lot of the parties' time and money. Before signing a contract with a termination fee clause, all of the parties should be sure that they understand and agree with the clause. If you are considering signing a contract with a termination fee clause, you might have an attorney review it before you sign it. The attorney might even be able to assist you with negotiating changes, if needed or helpful.

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