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Doing Business in India For Dummies® by Ranjini Manian

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Dodging Problems with Your Indian Contracts

First and foremost, you can’t underestimate the importance of articulate language in an Indian contract. The reason for this may seem simplistic to you—allow no room whatsoever for misinterpretation—but this needs to be heavily underscored in the Indian context, given the Indian penchant for flowery language. If you sign a contract with an Indian party, and leave it to them to draw up the documents, chances are you and your legal advisors back home can get hopelessly entangled in convoluted phrases and split infinitives. So keep it short and simple.

Make sure you’re on the same wavelength as your partner when working on a contract. Are you both looking for a long-term relationship, or is one of you interested in a short-term arrangement? Indians usually prefer a longer-term partnership. Also, are you on the same page in regards to priorities and focus?

Testing the waters with a pilot project is always a good idea before signing a long-term contract. Before you sign on the dotted line with your Indian partner/agent/supplier, agree to a trial run. This time not only gives you a chance to assess whether you can work with each other, but also it can reveal potential problems, which you can then eliminate.

The rest of this section contains a few other core concerns you should consider when working on your contracts. (I don’t include any information ...

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