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You Can Talk About, Talk About It

The attorney called, saying, “Hi, I’d like to discuss a few provisions of the contract.”  Sure, let’s go.

“In clause 6, where you say [insert at least two minutes of his reading 6 a-k, word for word], can we change represent to believe into ‘b’?” Sure again.

“In clause 11, where you say [insert at least two minutes of his reading 11 a-i, word for word], can we change knowingly to willfully into ‘a’?” Sure again.

“In clause 17, where you say [insert at least two minutes of his reading 17 a-m, word for word], can we insert the word professionally into ‘f’ before repair?” Sure again.

“In clause 21,” he says, and I snap (in a poised, professional manner). “With all due respect,” I interject, “we both have the document open in front of us. Why don’t you just ask me for the change you want, rather than re-sharing all the words?”

“Gotcha,” he relies, in what I think is an acknowledgement. “Now, in clause 24, where you say [insert his reading 24 in its entirety], can we change $1,500 to $3,500?”

It has to be a deliberate negotiating technique, don’t you think? He must figure that if he reads the entire document aloud the other side will agree to anything that finally makes him shut up. I didn’t fall into his trap (I said “no” to three out of his last five requests), but boy, I was tempted to entitle this blog post, “Shoot Me Now.”

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