As a commercial transactional lawyer, I often speak to my clients and colleagues about contract management. While I am usually heavily involved in many stages of the contract lifecycle – most notably, negotiations, drafting, closings and amendments – the real work (and most problems) arise during contract performance, which is the time the contracting company is typically “on its own.” I stress to my clients that competent management of contracts post-execution is critical: your management team needs to know its contractual obligations: due dates and milestones, payment terms, and areas of performance. Who’s doing what, when, and for how much? I recommend companies appoint a contract manager to maintain each contract and its pertinent information, and create a database of performance, payment, and other obligation information, along with applicable deadlines and a “tickler” system.
Now, in the wake of COVID-19 and its tremendous impact on businesses, it is important to pull out those databases, and update them with information particular to the current state of operations – yours and your contracting partners. Continue reading →