WWEMA Finance & Contract Administration Council Meeting Scheduled for May 17 & 18, 2017—Plan to Attend Today

The Water and Wastewater Equipment Manufacturers Assn.’s (WWEMA) Finance & Contract Administration (F&CA) Council meeting is being held May 17 and 18, 2017, at the Law Offices of Barnes & Thornburg in Chicago. The F&CA Council meeting is a must-attend for anyone working with contracts for their organizations. Experts will discuss important issues such as terms and conditions, payments and warranties, intellectual property and contracts, Incoterms and risk, common insurance issues, and more.

The meeting offers attendees the opportunity for education related to contract administration. Each year, attendees rave about the importance of the meeting, often stating that if they just avoid one bad contract, they get their return on investment in WWEMA membership. Find out what you need to know before you sign. 

This year, the sessions are varied and include a session on Payments and Warranties where speaker Phil Beck—partner at Smith, Currie & Hancock LLP—will discuss equipment manufacturers’ understanding their contractual and legal rights and obligations. The session will focus on typical payment terms; fair and unfair payment terms; possible compromise solutions to pay-when-paid provisions; owners’ and contractors’ right to withhold payment; the relationship of payment and warranty obligations; implied vs. express warranties; and alternative sources of payment.

Beck will also have a session on Start-Up, Acceptance, Warranty, Close-Out, a session that goes into detail about how equipment manufacturers need to understand the contractual and legal obligations with regard to a particular transaction or project. This session will clearly spell out the protocol that defines the project closeout prerequisites. Attendees will walk away with some practical guidance and suggestions for creating a project closeout checklist; the significance of contract completion vs. project completion vs. startup; the time of acceptance and the ramifications; the time of warranty commencement; and more.

Other sessions include an important session on Intellectual Property (IP) and Contracts—a session that looks at IP and risk management provisions to consider when negotiating manufacturing, supply or licensing agreements. A session titled Addressing Common Insurance Problems will look at different insurance policies, what they cover and how you can protect your company. A Terms and Conditions session will feature a contractor who will discuss some industry standards and best practices for negotiating fair terms and mitigating risk for your company. 

Also, prior to this year’s event, attendees will submit their questions for a session titled How Does Your Company Handle This? Taking advantage of the brain trust at the meeting, this facilitated discussion on how people handle specific aspects of their jobs will help attendees who face similar challenges. All in all, the F&CA Council meeting has something for everyone.

The meeting is limited to 50 attendees, for both WWEMA members and non-members, so it fills up fast. WWEMA has secured a block of rooms at the La Quinta Downtown Chicago, just across the street from the meeting location. To obtain the special WWEMA group rate, rooms must be booked by April 24, 2017. Registration, hotel and the full schedule with sessions and speakers may be found at wwema.org/fcacouncil.php.

Vanessa M. Leiby is executive director of the Water and Wastewater Equipment Manufacturers Assn., a Washington, D.C.-based trade organization that has represented the interests of manufacturers serving the water supply and wastewater treatment industry since 1908. Leiby can be reached at [email protected].

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