Apr 20, 2012

Signing the Contract (Construction Works)

When a tender is accepted by client, the tenderer is now becoming the contractor for the said project.

We must understand that in a project, a contract (the agreement) must be in writing and signed by both parties (the Contractor and the Client) before the contractor can commence works.

Do you know, in its ordinary meaning, the word “sign” as a verb means an act of writing one’s name on a document to show that one is the writer or that one agrees with the contents. In other words, signature is an indication, by sign, mark, or generally by writing of a name or initials, that a person (or a body) intends to bind himself to the contents of a document. We must also bear in mind the act of signing itself under the law. Under section 3 of Interpretation Act 1967, “sign” includes the making of a mark or the affixing of a tumb-print.

If a person in an organization has to sign an agreement, he must ensure that he has authority (being authorized) to do so. The agreement must also being affixed with corporate seal of the company (or the seal of the organization), if required by the company’s or organization’s constitution (eg. under the Memorandum and Articles of Association of the company). If the firm is a partnership, then any of their partners may sign the contract for and on behalf of the firm.

It is not stated anywhere as to when to sign the contract. However, the very basic principle is, the contract must be signed before commencement of works. If there is any delay due to any unavoidable circumstances, it must be signed within reasonable time.

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