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  • My Legal Briefcase

    What do you mean I signed another contract? Part Two
    Posted: 2010-12-23 07:04:09

    By Laurie Lonsdale

    So, was this extension to the first alarm contract valid?  And could this person, or anyone else, be forced to uphold it?  The short answer is ‘NO’.

    If a client pays a fee for the repair to their alarm monitoring equipment or a replacement battery, then fair payment in exchange for the repair or battery is a contract in itself, and would not be the basis to extend the contract period. Some people are led to believe they have no choice but to keep doing business with the company, so they continue to pay for monthly services long after their initial contract ends. However, in this case, when the alarm company was challenged on the validity of the contract, they agreed to terminate the services.

    The lesson learned was to read anything you sign before signing it.  Many contracts are lengthy and wordy, but not all are the same.  In this case, where the person thought they were signing an invoice to acknowledge the maintenance of the alarm company’s equipment, they were actually signing for another year of service.  If you find yourself in a similar situation of having to sign off on maintenance, or sign anything else for that matter, and you don’t understand the wording on the document, please ask for an explanation.  It’s better to have a thorough understanding of what you’re signing than to be surprised by hidden terms and conditions later on. You also have the right to negotiate the terms of the contract, and can ask for terms to be excluded.

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