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Top 5 Legal Tips for Wedding Contracts

By Deanne Katz, Esq. | Last updated on

If you're going to be a summer bride, or groom for that matter, you're probably up to your eyeballs in wedding-related contracts. Between the venue, the flowers, the caterer, and everything else, there's a lot of paperwork to sign.

You know what's not romantic? Having an attorney along while you and your sweetie taste cake and look for a spot. There must be a better way to review all that paperwork.

Oh and there is. You don't always need a lawyer to look over the contracts you sign with vendors for your wedding (though that's really not a bad idea). Mostly you just need to know what to look out for.

Here are five legal tips when it comes to your wedding contracts:

  1. Double-check what's included. When talking to the photographer or the florist, they may tell you what's included -- but when you look at the contract, it's nowhere to be seen. Talk is cheap, so make sure to put it in writing.

  2. Don't overlook minimums and maximums. When it comes to weddings, many vendors, especially the venue, will require a minimum number of guests or set a maximum limit, or both. Find out what their numbers are and check them against your guest list. If your plans don't match up, don't sign.

  3. Are you limited by a list? Wedding industry folks like to stick together, which means your venue may only work with an approved list of caterers, photographers, and florists. If you don't want to be limited by this, keep an eye out for these types of requirements.

  4. Insurance matters. No one wants to worry about broken cameras and smashed cakes on their big day, and you certainly don't want to pay twice because a party wasn't insured. For big-ticket vendors, especially photographers and videographers, ask if their equipment is insured. If it's not, you might want to find someone else or look into your own wedding insurance plan.

  5. Ask about "rain dates" and cancellation policies. We know it's your special day, but there's a teeny chance something could go wrong. Maybe there's a freak storm or someone gets in a car accident and you have to move the date. Can you do so without incurring a penalty? It's something to think about before signing a contract with any wedding vendor.

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