Purchasers told: when in doubt, ask a lawyer

31 January 2002
More legal news

31 January 2002

Purchasers need to be honest with themselves about their lack of knowledge of legislation that affects procurement and not be afraid to seek legal advice.

The advice is contained in a new document from CIPS, called Competence with the law. It suggests the increase in global purchasing means buyers are increasingly required to contract on suppliers' terms and conditions of sale, which means the law of the supplier's country.

CIPS encourages purchasers to insist on their own country's terms and conditions of purchase, so they are absolutely sure of their legal responsibilities.

When legal advice is needed, another new policy, on using lawyers, points out that purchasers should be able to manage the relationship as they do with any other service companies.

The institute recommends that buyers should develop a strategy that helps lawyers to draw attention to risk. But it is still the purchaser's responsibility to assess their organisation's exposure, it says.

• The policy document is available on the CIPS website at www.cips.org

SMjan2002

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