Read the Fine Print: Global Contracts Should Include Several Important Provisions. (Legalease)

By Rothenberg, Pamela V. | Journal of Property Management, January-February 2003 | Go to article overview

Read the Fine Print: Global Contracts Should Include Several Important Provisions. (Legalease)


Rothenberg, Pamela V., Journal of Property Management


As the globalization of the economy progresses, the U.S. real estate industry will face more opportunities to engage in domestic transactions involving international companies. This trend will have a significant impact on agreements used by owners and managers to document their debt, equity, purchase, sale and leasing transactions. Owners and managers should familiarize themselves with basic issues that arise in global contracts.

Contract Enforceability

Owners and managers should make sure the agreement is enforceable under local U.S. law and under the laws of any other applicable jurisdiction. Even if the agreement is enforceable under local U.S. law, it may become necessary to execute judgments or arbitration awards under the laws where a company is created or domiciled.

Do not assume an agreement will automatically be enforceable against a foreign company simply because it was prepared in the United States or that a court will respect the local choice of law provisions in the agreement requiring it to be construed under local law. Owners and managers should engage local counsel to confirm an agreement is enforceable against the international parry in the U. S. under the law of the jurisdiction where the real property is located.

Payment Terms

It's important to pay careful attention to the "price" term specified in a global contract, whether stared in the form of a purchase price, loan, equity amount or rental payment. The agreement should state the currency of the price term and the currency of the payment. If the price is variable in any respect try to base the price upon an independently verifiable U.S. index, not on information uniquely available to the foreign party. …

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