Independent contractor agreement – how to create a good freelance contract template
Are you looking for an independent contractor agreement template because you are afraid to forget something important when drafting your freelance contracts? Then you’re not alone! Contracts can stress most people. What if we forgot an important section and end up in a lawsuit that pursues us for the next many years?
Stop – it’s time to calm down.
A freelance contract or independent contractor agreement is also “just” an agreement between you and your customer.
Obviously, it is not a document that you should neglect, but a freelance contract is nothing extra-terrestrial, it is just a deal between the customer and you as a consultant, probably represented by your company. Think about what you actually need to agree on, which specific circumstances should be reflected in the contract, and how comprehensive it needs to be. In other words, even if it’s a legal document, your common sense is still useful!
You can in principle decide to make an oral agreement with your client, but in that case, it will be difficult to prove what was actually agreed on in your oral contract in case of disputes or disagreement. So, make sure to have your customer agreements in written form – sometimes a confirmed email can be enough.
The good freelance contract is neither too long nor too short
In our experience, it is best to have a freelance contract/contractor agreement where all text serves a purpose. You must of course align key data, milestones and expectations with the customers and put it all in the contract, but don’t fill pages with legal lingo, which none of you understand. By doing so, you also increase the chance that the contract will actually be read and can serve as a basis for a smooth cooperation without misunderstandings..
What standard section should there be in a freelance contract?
- The parties in the agreement (e.g. you and the customer)
- Description of project or task
- Duration, workload (e.g. how many weekly hours) and where the task is to be performed
- Terms of termination, what applies in case of extension of the contract
- Hourly rate and information on taxes/VAT.
- If relevant, expenses covered by the customer (e.g. transportation, hotel, telephone).
- Agreements on intellectual property/ copyrights
- Definition of confidential information and, if necessary, a separate non-disclosure agreement
- Choice of Governing Law and Jurisdiction
Create your own independent contractor agreement template
There is of course no reason to make each of your contracts from scratch. Create a freelance contract template that matches your typical projects and which contains all required standard information. This way, you can quickly adapt your personal contractor agreement template to a specific project.
Delivering independent consultants and contractors is at the heart of our business and we sign a lot of agreements with contractors every week. We have created an independent contractor agreement template that you can download and use as a source of inspiration and as a starting point to create your own personal contractor agreement. Just be aware that we are neither lawyers nor know your specific situation.
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