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Do you own a web design business? If you do, you will likely be familiar with using a web design contract with your clients. Contracts can be confusing, however, it is important to remember that your contract will only be effective if it is legally enforceable. Additionally, a contract is only enforceable if it meets all the elements of a binding contract. The most contentious element is whether both parties to a contract intend for the contract to be binding. If they do not then the contract cannot be enforceable. Another issue is whether the terms of the contract are drafted well enough. This article will explain how to create a web design contract so that it is enforceable.

What is a Web Design Contract?

A web design contract is used by web designers to outline the rights and obligations of them and their customers. It will contain the terms that the transaction is based on. Web designers will either be used as a one-off service or they can be continuing. This means that the web designers will maintain and upkeep the client’s website according to their needs. As such the web design contract will govern this relationship for as long as is needed.

Type of Contract

Before creating a web design contract, you should decide what type of contract you are looking to create. This means that you should look at how long the contract will be for. If you are offering a continuing service then you should make sure to note this in the contract. There doesnt have to be an expiry date but you should note that the contract will end once the client is finished with the service. If you are offering a one-off service then the contract should state how long this will take.

Scope of the Contract

You should also consider the scope of the web design contract when you are contracting with a client. The scope will determine what you are looking to achieve with the contract and how much work you are expected to do for your client. The scope of the contract can be generic but it should be specific enough for the project at hand. 

Payment Terms

Another aspect of a web design contract that you should consider is the payment terms. The way you structure payment will depend on the type of contract that you are drafting. For example, if you are drafting a continuing contract then the payment will be frequent and you should decide how often you want this to be. However, if the payment is one-off then you can merely state a date that this must be paid by. You should also consider whether your contract is fixed-price. This means that the price that you charge for your service cannot change even if your own costs go up. This is more appealing for clients but it may also mean that you lost money on certain jobs.

Important Clauses

Termination Clause

An important clause to include in your web design contract is a termination clause. This allows either party to cancel the agreement once certain conditions have been met. These conditions should be outlined in the contract and are negotiated between the parties.

The termination clause must only be activated if the conditions on the contract are met, otherwise your contracting party could claim a breach of contract.

Intellectual Property Considerations

Another important clause that you should have in a web design contract is one that relates to intellectual property. When designing a client’s website, it is likely that you will be dealing with your client’s intellectual property. It is important that you know what your rights are to this intellectual property. An intellectual property clause will determine whether you are licenced to use your client’s intellectual property and what you can use it for.

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Key Takeaways

A web design contract is used to outline the rights and obligations of the web designer and the client. When you are creating a web design contract you should make sure that you are clearly stating what the contract is for and include certain terms so that you are protected in case there is an issue or dispute. You must first determine what type of contract you are looking to enter into and how long the project will last. These considerations will determine how you draft the contract. You should also consider including a termination clause in case you wish to terminate the agreement and an intellectual property clause so that you are aware of your rights when using your client’s intellectual property.

If you need help drafting or negotiating security guard service contracts, our experienced contract lawyers can assist as part of our LegalVision membership. For a low monthly fee, you will have unlimited access to lawyers to answer your questions and draft and review your documents. Call us today on 0800 005 570 or visit our membership page.

Frequently Asked Questions

When should you consider including an intellectual property clause in your web design contract?

You should include an intellectual property clause if you are using your client’s intellectual property in your work. This is so that you are aware of what limits you have to use that intellectual property. 

Can either party cancel a web design contract at any time?

No, a web design contract can only be cancelled by mutual consent or through the termination clause. 

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