The venue is booked. The pictures– planned. Flowers? Check! Nothing is too good when it comes to planning your wedding. But, what if your dream day turns into a nightmare? Maybe the florist flakes and brings you bad bouquets… or you realize it’s not such a pretty picture dealing with your photographer. Do you want to complain??? Not so fast. Your wedding contracts may include a clause that prevents you from writing bad reviews or saying negative things regardless of who is in the wrong.
Take the example of Karina, a bride-to-be, who decided that she didn’t like her photographer and canceled her contract. When she posted an online review to warn other brides, she received an email from her photographer warning her about facing legal action for breach of contract if the review wasn’t removed.
The bride-to-be said she never realized the contract said that “neither party will disparage the other.” Karina was disheartened that she couldn’t review a vendor and more so that she received a letter that was so threatening that she felt bullied.
Experts say that these clauses are becoming more common since a company’s online reputation can “make or break you” and to try to protect themselves against unreasonable customers. Experts say be on the lookout for words like “confidentiality,” “non-review,” and “non-disparagement.”
Attorney Noah Davis says that if you spot a non-disparagement clause, ask the business why it’s there. But if you really want to hire them, negotiate.
When researching for vendors, look to see how a company responds to a negative response. If they respond to consumer complaints in a reasonable way, that is actually a good sign.
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