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What is a severability clause?

On Behalf of | May 9, 2022 | Business Law

As a business owner, you will certainly come across numerous instances in your career where you will need to draft contracts. Whether it is with employees, contractors, business partners or other providers of services, you need to create a strong binding agreement in writing.

However, not every part of a contract will always hold up. Some portions can end up having issues, and when that happens, you do not want to start from scratch. To avoid scrapping the entire contract, consider the importance of a severability clause.

The purpose of severability clauses

Cornell Law School dives into severability clauses, one of many potential clauses you can include in your contract. This clause allows you to keep the majority of your contract in tact in the event that a court deems one or more provisions as unenforceable, void or unconstitutional. In other words, you do not need to start from the drawing board if you need to scrap part of the contract.

Exemptions from this clause

This can come in handy as provisions in contracts can end up null for various reasons. For example, a law in their state could prevent a party to your contract from fulfilling their end of the agreement. Many times, the circumstances that lead to failed provisions are not malicious or anticipated.

Of course, exceptions do exist. For example, a severability clause does not apply if the bad provision in question impacts every part of the contract. In that case, you will need to start over and may want to contact an attorney for aid in rewriting the contract.


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