Shepherd and Wedderburn take the lead on new Contracts Bill

9 June 2014

Shepherd and Wedderburn take the lead on new Contracts Bill

Shepherd and Wedderburn is particularly pleased to welcome the introduction to the Scottish Parliament of a Bill that will allow businesses and individuals to create effective contracts and finalise agreements and other documents more speedily, having played a central role in its conception, and its content.

The Bill provides 21st century solutions to signing and delivery of documents by permitting:

  • the execution of documents in counterpart (that is, in two or more duplicate, interchangeable parts); and
  • delivery of traditional documents by electronic means.

The Legal Writings (Counterparts and Delivery) (Scotland) Bill, introduced to the Parliament on 15 May 2014, is sponsored by the Scottish Law Commission, and arises from the Commission's wide ranging (and ongoing) review of Contract Law in Scotland.  The suggestion that the Commission should consider introducing a law allowing "execution in counterpart" – a technique effectively unknown in Scotland, although widely used in England and Wales – came from Shepherd and Wedderburn's Paul Hally, who brought this practice to the attention of the Commission.

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