The attorney review process is unique to NJ and protects both buyers and sellers from entering into a real estate contract that does not sufficiently safeguard their interests. In the state of NJ, it is not mandatory to hire an attorney, however, it is highly advisable to seek counsel to review your contract before entering into a binding agreement with a buyer or seller. Below we break down a key items to know and understand before you engage in a real estate contract of sale.
Why Do We Need Attorney Review?
The NJ realtor contract is a standard form and does not really offer the proper protection for either party in its untouched form. So, the attorney review period exists to allow each party to retain counsel and have their attorney review the contract and explain the party’s rights and obligations and then negotiate modifications to their benefit.
Important Info To Remember During Attorney Review:
During attorney review, the attorneys exchange review letters which will contain provisions that, once agreed upon, will ultimately become part of the contract. The letters and the NJ realtor contract will be read together as the entire agreement. If there are any inconsistent provisions, the last version of the particular provision in question will control, overruling any earlier, contradictory version.
Clarifying The 3 Day Rule:
In the Realtor Contract, there is a provision commonly referred to as the 3-day rule. Many believe this provision states that the attorney review process has to be concluded within three days of everyone signing the contracts when in actuality, the rule is that attorney review must BEGIN within three days. Attorney review is initiated when one party’s attorney formally objects to the contract in its current form and states that they would accept the contract should specific modifications be incorporated.
Why Is It Important To Conclude Attorney Review Quickly?
The fact is, either party can back out during attorney review for any reason. There is no legal contractual obligation yet. So, while attorney review can take as long as it needs to for the attorneys and parties to reach an agreement on all terms, your attorney should also appreciate that the passing of time is a risk in and of itself. The attorney’s first goal should be to negotiate the most protective provisions for their client, with expediency being a close second goal.
We have an extensive list of qualified referrals for attorneys in the Hudson County area. If you are looking for a recommendation, we are happy to connect you with some of our top referrals, who will protect you during your real estate transaction