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A contract of adhesion has been defined as one 'that is drafted unilaterally by the dominant party and then presented on a 'take-it-or-leave-it' basis to the weaker party who has no real opportunity to bargain about its terms.' Restatement (Second) of Conflict of Laws § 187, Comment b. The comment goes on to note that such contracts 'are usually prepared in printed form, and frequently at least some of their provisions are in extremely small print.' It is generally recognized that insurance policies qualify as contracts of adhesion.


The fact that a contract is one of adhesion does not mean that either it or any of its terms are invalid or unenforceable. A court will, to be sure, look at the contract and its terms with some special care. As in most cases, it will refuse to enforce terms that it finds unconscionable and will construe ambiguities against the draftsman; but it will not simply excise or ignore terms merely because, in the given case, they may operate to the perceived detriment of the weaker party. See, in general, Restatement (Second) of Contracts § 211, Comment c; also Corbin on Contracts §§ 559, 1376.  


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