If you wish to build bridges, aim higher

“If you end up in the tombola of litigation, you have already done something wrong when drafting the contract.”

Barnsteen advocatuur
Mr. J. (Jan) van Duijvendijk, advocaat
Steijnlaan 1
3743 CH Baarn

Tel +31 6 53 623 821
E-mail info@barnsteen-advocatuur.nl


Contracts and negotiations 
As far as I am concerned, collaboration demands expertise, insight and vision, due care and respect for the collaboration partner. Drafting proper contracts requires legal edge, linguistic sharpness, knowledge of the business sector, and creativity.

Good contracts do not only provide a comfortable position in a dispute situation, but - even better - will make sure that parties understand and do what has been agreed. This is how you avoid disputes and legal proceedings with an uncertain outcome.

During negotiations, whether it is about the early phase of a project or if a dispute is imminent, I do not only think logically, but also laterally. There are not many lawyers who master this skill. This is how solutions sometimes come from a totally unexpected angle. And whenever possible, I also throw in a little twist and a joke, as this can build a pleasant atmosphere. Humour can also be a formidable weapon against an overly rigid attitude of the other party.

I also find it inspiring to transfer and share my expertise. For instance, I teach about my area of expertise at the Amsterdam School of Real Estate (ASRE) and at the NEPROM (Vereniging van Nederlandse Projectontwikkeling Maatschappijen). Occasionally I give guest lectures at the RUG (University of Groningen) at the Faculty of Spatial Sciences, Department of Spatial Planning and Environment. 


At the request of companies I set up in-house workshops and presentations regarding my area of expertise, also focusing on the users, the people in the field who do not have a law degree.

A few examples

  • Contracting in Project and Area Development
  • General terms and conditions in Project Development
  • Ins and outs of the so-called CV-BV construction
  • Forms of collaboration
  • Turnkey sales agreement
  • Contracting for Municipalities; anterior and posterior agreements
  • UAV agreements seen from the perspective of the client
  • Separated sale & contracting agreements for corporations
  • Integration and collaboration within the chain
New construction, renovation and transformation
New construction is a relatively straightforward, technical and legal affair. How different is the renovation or transformation of an existing building that may contain hidden technical defects? Just think of the various uncertainties such as reinforcement, construction issues and pollution (soil contamination, asbestos). Where are the pipes located, what is the wear & tear status? Simple old-school contracting agreements will not suffice. What is needed, in addition to alert acting by the designing and executing parties, are integrated contracting forms.
Forearmed, staying out of court

Legal practice is mostly about proper preparation of a project beforehand - not litigation. This means that it is better to engage Barnsteen Advocatuur in the early stages of negotiations, when the impact of proper legal advice is instrumental and the payoff of a clear contract is the highest. It goes without saying that we will take a close look at case law and that we know the textbooks. In order to stay out of court, it is vital to draw up appropriate contracts for the commercial practice of parties who join forces.
Contract as a railway timetable

If everyone sticks to the arrangements that are made, does everything in the proper sequence, and in accordance with the agreed and well-considered planning, success is guaranteed. In most cases, there are several ways of taking up a matter. But if you jointly agree on a specific way to go forward, you cannot deviate from it at a later stage. As a matter of fact, a contract serves the same purpose as a construction drawing. It is like a railway timetable, enabling all parties involved to see at all times what to do under specific circumstances - and not to check what should have been done in retrospect after things have already gone wrong.
Lateral thinking and creativity

The legal world and the litigation practice, even the Judiciary, often talk about the wonders of ‘mediation’. But what is mediation really? Considering the individual interests of stakeholders with an open mind and arriving at a voluntary solution. That is a lot easier to do before the atmosphere turns sour. Well then, why not use these mediation techniques during the preparatory stages of a project? Lateral thinking and creativity, that is what matters.

© 2020 Barnsteen advocatuur