Let's say you are a corporate lawyer. You spend your
pitiful and lonely life surrounded by marked up papers and red pens, drafting
or revising agreements. You send your final versions out to your
clients to sign, with those annoying little "sign here" stickers.
Then, the big day finally comes. Your work is in court
and the case turns on an agreement that you drafted. But it wasn't signed
by everybody concerned. It's a nightmare. What's going to happen?
Your astonishingly bright (and good
looking) litigation partner says "No sweat. We don't need no stinkin'
signatures." Is he or she right?
He or she might be, based on Judge Gale's decision last
week in Hawes
v. Vandoros, 2013 NCBC 31 [an enhanced version of this opinion is available to lexis.com
subscribers]. The parties were all joint owners of two investment
beach houses. When they refinanced the houses, most of them signed
"contribution agreements" providing that they would each pay a pro
rata share of the monthly payments due under the new loans.
Read this article in its entirety on North
Carolina Business Litigation Report, a blog for lawyers focusing on issues
of North Carolina business law and the day-to-day practice of business litigation
in North Carolina courts.
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