Adapting to change is good business practice — but has your flexibility varied your contract?

Boilerplate clauses are the trusty backbone of a contract: they comprise those reliable, operative terms that appear in most commercial contracts. They set out which law applies, how notices should be served and whether assignment is allowed, to highlight but a few of the terms they cover.

The recent Virulite case is a reminder that these common clauses should not be taken for granted and can be varied by the contracting parties’ post-contract behaviour.

In a changing economic climate, parties must adapt quickly to market forces. Those who change their methods of doing business — whether verbally, in correspondence or by doing things differently — should consider the consequent effect on their contract terms and, if necessary, adapt the contract too…

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