Doing business internationally often involves a significant number of legal elements. Consider, for example:
- Establishing agreements: This is done via a contract. You are not required by law to compile a contract, but it is certainly very useful. A good, solid contract provides clarity and helps avoid conflict.
- Content of an international contract: In an international contract it is important to state which law applies: Dutch law or the law of the country to which you are exporting. The applicable law also clarifies which court is competent in the event of a dispute. There are major differences between countries in this respect.
- General terms and conditions: General terms and conditions are supply and payment conditions that apply as standard to a quote and contract. Take a good look at your general terms and conditions to see whether they are suitable for activities overseas. Send your general terms and conditions along with your quote and refer to them in the contract. Ensure you have an accurate translation of your general terms and conditions.
- Intellectual property rights: If you are introducing a new or unique product onto the international market, naturally you don’t want others to be able to copy it indiscriminately. You can take precautionary measures by registering your trade mark and – if it concerns your own invention – applying for a patent for your product.
- Product standards and liability: If you bring a faulty product onto the market, you are liable for any resulting damage. So make sure you are fully aware of the product standards in the country you are supplying to. You will also be liable if the defect is not your fault, and even if you possess the right quality certification. If you are held liable, you may be faced with financial claims, particularly in the United States.
- Legal documents (import and export): When you do business internationally, you have to deal with a great deal of documentation. Which documents you need depends on various factors, such as the product, the country of destination or origin and the method of transport used. These documents may be requested by different parties, for instance the customs or other governmental body in the country of destination, a bank or the purchaser.
The overseas Kreston partner can play an important role in the following situations (among others):
- Legal structure within which the overseas activities are carried out
- Conditions of establishment and permits