Top 10 contracts Brits sign without reading first

11 September 2013

Have you ever signed a contract without reading it? If the answer is yes, you're far from alone. In fact, nearly a third of us have admitted to doing so, according to a survey from

Online terms and conditions (T&Cs) are most likely to have gone unread, with 41% of those surveyed stating they didn't bother to go through the document before agreeing to it. pointed out that previous studies have shown that some online T&Cs have as many words as Shakespeare's Hamlet.

Meanwhile, 13% of those surveyed admitted they hadn't even read their mortgage or property rental agreement.

The most common reason cited (44%) for failing to read the full terms of an agreement was to dodge jargon and complicated legal issues; while 28% of survey respondents said they only read what they think are 'the important bits' of an agreement.

However, Emma Myers, head of wills, probate and lifetime planning at, warned: "As mind-numbing as small print can be, signing a legally-binding document without fully reading and understanding can have serious legal implications later on.

"Now our lives are increasingly being lived online, it's particularly worrying that the number one document Britons don't read before signing is terms and conditions on websites."
Top 10 documents we sign without reading

1.   Online terms and conditions (41%)
2.   For a parcel (28%)
3.   Contract for mobile phone/tablet (20%)
4.   Direct debit agreement (16%)
5.   Hire purchase agreement (15%)
6.   Loan (15%)
7.   Mortgage agreement or property rental (13%)
8.   Car hire (10%)
9.   Job contract (8%)
10. A will, power of attorney or other legal document (6%)

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