Why Are Contracts Important?
Well-written contracts provide clear expectations for you and your clients regarding the exchange of services provided and compensation received. They can limit misunderstandings and liability if a dispute arises. Contracts with subcontractors you may use in the course of providing professional services serve the same function.
What Should Be Included in a Contract?
Details are important. Elements of a contract should include:
- All parties’ information, including contact information, legal business names, and billing addresses
- Offer and acceptance of terms, including documentation of any revisions arising from the negotiating process
- Start date of provision of services
- Rate of compensation, payment schedules and changes in compensation
- Termination of services, including how payment will be handled
- Clear and well-defined scope of services that does not extend to unintended responsibilities
- Indemnification provisions and limitations of liability for the professional
- Liability insurance requirements for entities providing services
Work with a lawyer when possible to ensure the contract is enforceable.