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Photograph of Ross Hyams.

The Ross Hyams perspective

Ross Hyams is an educator and law practitioner. Here, Ross presents his unique perspective on the essential things you need to know before entering into a contract.

We know that it’s one thing to learn about contract law but it’s always different to apply these principles in the real world.

Whilst we can not give you any general legal advice about your particular contractual obligations, we can provide you with these helpful suggestions that could make navigating contracting more easy for you.

Contract law essentials

If you are unsure what your rights and responsibilities are under a contract that you’ve entered into, then make sure you reach out for help and seek advice. Legal problems are always best dealt with early and effectively to avoid later heartache, cost and preventable loss. Lawyers are best engaged before contracts are entered into by clients, but they can also be invaluable to help people settle disputes and achieve mediated outcomes without the need to go to court and have their case decided by a judge.

If you are experiencing financial difficulties, investigate whether there is a free community legal centre who can help. Finally, your problem might also be one that an industry regulator, called an Ombudsman can help with. For example, Consumer Affairs Victoria, the Financial Ombudsman Service, or the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman are services that can assist those living in Victoria, Australia with dispute resolution. The Office of Communications, Office of Gas and Electricity Markets and Water Services Regulation Authority are some examples of regulators in the UK. These services are usually free or low cost.

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This article is from the free online course:

Law for Non-Lawyers: Introduction to Law

Monash University