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Navigating Deadlines in FR/BAR Contracts: A Comprehensive Guide

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In the FR/BAR Contract, we calculate deadlines using calendar days unless specified differently. Since most time periods start with the Effective Date, it’s crucial to monitor the signing by the parties and the delivery of offers. This includes any initialing done after signing the Contract! Some periods start counting backward from the Closing Date, such as the survey deadline and title commitment deadline. Keep in mind that, except for the Effective Date and time for acceptance, if a time period ends on a weekend or national legal holiday, the due date becomes the next business day. This is especially important to consider when choosing a closing date in order to manage expectations of when exactly the property can transfer hands. 

Navigating Calendar Challenges: Weekends and Holidays in FR/BAR Contracts

There is (of course) a caveat to when a deadline falls onto the next business day. When a deadline includes the term “at least” before a deadline, it could fall on an earlier business day rather than the next business day because “at least” means that day or sooner. Here are some examples using the survey deadline: 

  1. Survey Deadline Without a Weekend or Holiday – Under Section(d) of the Contract, the survey is due (if left blank) at least five days prior to the Closing Date. If the Closing Date is Tuesday, March 19, then the survey is due Thursday, March 14.
  2. Survey Deadline falling on a Weekend or Holiday – In this example, the Closing Date is Thursday, March 21. Five days prior to Thursday, March 21, is Saturday, March 16. In this case, the survey deadline would be Friday, March 15, as opposed to Monday, March 18, which is the next business day.

Another controlling date to pay attention to is the Effective Date. In Standard F of the Contract, the Effective Date is an exception to the rule for dates following a weekend or a national holiday. Consider this example: If you sign the Contract on Saturday, March 16, and the initial deposit follows three days later, then you must make the initial deposit by Tuesday, March 19. Remember, the fact that the Effective Date falls on a Saturday does not alter this schedule.

Seal the Deal: Ensuring Compliance with the FR/BAR Contract

Overall, it is important to count the days in between deadlines to ensure deadlines are being met. Make sure to date any initials and make clear when the Contract is signed so that all parties, including your title company, can accurately account for these deadlines. As always, should you have any questions regarding any of the foregoing, please do not hesitate to contact Berlin Patten Ebling, PLLC.

Mariah Miller, Esq.

Mariah Miller, Esq.

Mariah focuses her practice in land use and on real property transactions.

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