All attorneys know there are “rules of construction” in the interpretation of contracts and agreements. These rules call for the Court to first see if the language is clear without further testimony. If the language is not clear, the Court might hear testimony as to the intent of the parties. If the intent is still not clear, the Court will interpret the agreement against the drafter of the Agreement. In divorce cases, one attorney is usually charged with the actual typing of the agreement.
But interpreting the agreement against the attorney typing the agreement is often not fair, because the mere typist of the agreement doesn’t have total control over the language. Instead, the language is the product of compromise. Our firm utilizes the following language to protect ourselves when we assume the responsibility for the actual typing of the agreement:
Future Interpretation. Both parties agree that should any future dispute arise as to the interpretation of this agreement or any part thereof, the agreement shall be construed as having been equally drafted by both parties as if each party drafted each and every word and, therefore, should not be construed against a party because that party actually prepared the agreement.
For more unique provisions, visit me at my presentation on “Unique Divorce Provisions” on January 26, 11 at the Old Capitol Inn. You can register here!