The Sinner’s Guide to Contract Law

August 23rd


The Sinner’s Guide to Contract Law

August 23rd

2 - 5pm

Speakers: Stephen Cotton, Donna Reynolds

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£135+VAT (Member price)

3hrs CPD

As long as the world is turning and spinning, we’re gonna be dizzy and we’re gonna make mistakes-Mel Brooks.


Which of us do adhere to the counsel of perfection in drafting our contracts, whether to record a simple or complex agreement?

This seminar is designed as a self-help guide on some of the problems/opportunities that arise not so much from not knowing the basics as from forgetting them in the heat of the moment when, to everyone’s relief and after weeks or months of negotiation, agreement on the ‘big points’ suddenly breaks out and everyone is desperate to sign up and test the ‘act in haste, repent at leisure’ maxim to its breaking point.


In bite sized and alternating chunks, Stephen will address the general (the who, what, how and why basics) and Donna another basic question: are employment contracts and their rights and obligations a subset of the general or something quite different?

Along the way, we’ll discuss using some of the case law we all regularly hear about in very learned but slightly abstract terms. For example, now it’s not only our clients who dare to speak their name, what do we do about penalties? Or....we all say enforcing restrictive covenants against former employees is different-but is it?

This seminar will cover the following areas:

  • Why getting the parties right still matters
  • How, as drafters, we can help our litigation colleagues
  • How easy is it to find a contract?
  • Agreeing to agree
  • Contractual discretions
  • Termination
  • Penalties
  • Indemnities/Warranties
  • Limitation/exclusion
  • Notices
  • BREXIT boilerplates
  • Contractual or non-contractual term in an employment contract?
  • Current approach to contractual interpretation
  • Rights and mechanics to vary and the impact of trust and confidence
  • Consideration for restrictive covenants
  • Restrictive covenants and TUPE
  • Restrictive covenants and damages
  • The event begins at 2pm. Delegate registration is open from 1:30pm.

    Stephen Cotton co-founded CCW Business Lawyers in 2003 and has been a regular speaker at professional conferences on contract law for over 25 years. He was a member of the Advisory Group on the Scottish Law Commission’s recently completed project on Contract Law in the light of the DCFR-see here for the SLC Report. For over 35 years, he has advised on a variety of B2B and B2C bespoke/standard form contracts. He also has extensive experience of sporting, sponsorship, creative rights and IT/IPR contracts and was, from 2004-14, Chair of Edinburgh’s Traverse Theatre.

    Donna Reynolds is a CCW partner, an Accredited Employment Law Specialist, a member of the Employment Lawyers Group and, for over 15 years, has advised employers big and small and employees from the factory floor to senior management. This gamekeeper and poacher mix has covered disciplinary issues to discrimination and everything in between. She is published regularly in the Scotsman on employment law issues and runs a regular Employment Forum and HR Group attended by everyone from household name employers to the smallest of SMEs. The Forum updates attendees on employment law developments in a straight forward and practical way but also allows managers and HR professionals from different sectors to air issues on a Chatham House Rules basis.