A Guide to Freelance Contracts
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If you’re new to the freelancing world, you certainly need a guide to freelance contracts. Wait, contracts? I thought I became a freelancer because I wanted to avoid being limited by one employer. That’s true; however, in freelancing, contracts actually protect you. They’re the only way to make sure you’ll get paid after you do the job.
In this article, we’ll talk about different freelance contract terms.
Basic Freelance Contract
You should specify the details of both parties, the freelancer and the client providing the job. You can enter your details on any basic contract template. If your client is a company, you need to have a real contract. However, if you do some small job for an individual, you can sometimes do it with a payment agreement template. You can find examples online.
The contract shouldn’t only specify the amount the client has to pay you, but it should also establish some deadlines. This is especially important for freelancers who don’t have the same inflow of work every month, helping them plan their finances.
This can be a separate document, but it’s often included in your contract. Many clients ask for this agreement, especially if they’re working in a highly competitive industry. By signing this contract, you agree that you’ll keep the details of the project a secret. It’s essential to check whether this rule lasts only while you’re working on it, or it lasts forever.
Statement of Work
The statement of work is a document outlining all your responsibilities. It’s often made in the form of a simple email before you even start working. Many freelancers believe that this statement has the same authority as a real contract, but that’s not often the case. Most courts would reject it, especially if it’s not authorized. Therefore, it’s always better to also sign a contract.
Terms and Conditions
Freelancing contracts are great because you can add any condition you want apart from the standard terms, which can be found on any terms and conditions template. Most freelancers also add their milestones as a special term.
Milestones actually specify the dynamics of payments involved – every time you reach a milestone, you get paid one part of the total amount. For example, let’s say you’re a copywriter who has to deliver 100 pages to a client. Of course, you don’t want to wait till the end to be paid. No problem, you can set milestones after every 10 pages, so the client pays you bit by bit.
Also, you can specify the number of changes that are included in the price. Some clients ask for too many revisions, which can take even more time than the initial version. To prevent misunderstandings, make sure to include this in your contract also.
Do Freelance Contracts Have to Be Notarized?
No, freelance contracts don’t have to be notarized. After reading a guide to freelance contracts, you can browse free contract templates and find something that suits you. A simple contract template is usually enough. However, if the client seems suspicious, you should have the contract notarized for additional security.
As you can see, even freelancing has some rules and regulations. The good thing is that you and your client can set your own rules; there’s no one else to regulate you. The next time someone wants to hire you, use a guide to freelance contracts to determine what’s the best option for you.