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Nondisclosure agreements: key business contracts, to be sure

Careful contract negotiation, drafting and enforcement are critically important for any business. Contracts are what define terms, set expectations, stipulate key timeframes, set forth parameters regarding financing, purchase/sale elements, due diligence, governing law and scores of other vital considerations.

In the truest sense, and along with a well-considered business plan, top-quality contracts spanning all major company functions and endeavors are critically important instruments for ensuring and driving continued business success.

Although the contracts relevant to a commercial enterprise will vary depending on its type and objectives, of course, certain agreements frequently assume major importance for many businesses, regardless of the industry in which they operate.

Employment contracts are a key focus, as are agreements relating to the leasing of property and equipment, warranties, indemnity, security matters, consultant and vendor relationships, franchising, joint ventures and additional business concerns.

One additional concern that is universally relevant is the focus of an enterprise on the full identification and safeguarding of its proprietary data and processes.

That concern, notes one business commentator, makes nondisclosure agreements "foundational" company instruments for their role in "outlining a party's rights, duties and responsibilities regarding the disclosure, receipt and protection of confidential information."

So-called "NDAs," also commonly called confidentiality agreements (or sometimes simply secrecy agreements) are routinely executed by businesses all across the country that are disclosing information for a variety of reasons where it is important that limits be placed on third-party access.

We'll take a look at some of the central points relevant to NDAs in our next blog post.

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