Note that an “informal writing” (e.g., a memorandum on the back of napkin that includes all the necessary elements including the signatures of both parties) can satisfy the statute of frauds in the UCC so long is it represents the intent to be bound by the contract.
Such signatures, however, are not likely to meet state requirements for real estate forms.
If you make an agreement with someone that has all the elements of a contract (offer, acceptance, consideration, and intention), you are both competent to do so, and the contract is for less than 0, you often do not need a written contract. Per the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC), contracts involving more than 0 in exchange for goods must be in writing (UCC Section 2-201--commonly called the statute of frauds).
And, of course, make sure you get the other party’s signature and a copy of the agreement with both signatures.For a shorter piece with a few practical tips see Backdating – it’s illegal isn’t it?Setting aside such issues, avoiding unwanted side effects of backdating contracts can be tricky, especially when the purported effective date of an agreement is several months before the date it was actually signed, as can be seen in involves the ownership of a promissory note that was made to a bank in connection with a loan.This third-party witness should keep a copy of the legal document for his personal records.If at some future time, the parties should display two different documents, then the neutral third-party can act as the arbitrator of such a dispute.