Many times we are asked by our clients, what is the point of having Terms & Conditions for their business? Is it really necessary? To put it simply, this is where you can put all the fine details about provision of your goods or services, create a legally binding document in the case of a complaint and answer all those questions that may not be clear in your advertising. It also will make your business look more professional.
We have listed 7 reasons why we think it will help protect your business and your customers.
1. Your Business Details
Understanding the correct entity for your customers is important to reduce your risk. Listing your ABN or ACN number is also important for tax and GST components.
2. Goods and/or Services Offered
A clear description of the goods and/or the scope of services your business offers is outlined, including when risk and ownership pass to your customer, what happens if there is a variation to the goods and services and when is a “binding contract” formed.
This outlines when payment (including any deposit) must be made, whether prices are inclusive of GST and other taxes, if delivery costs are inclusive. We can also include consequences for late payment, so as to give you the ability to oncharge interest and legal costs of recovery of outstanding invoices.
Sometimes delivery dates can be blown out due to circumstances outside your control. Here we would exclude any negative flow on effects to you from possible late delivery. Depending on your business, it may also be important to outline the expectations on delivery at the customer end.
Any warranties relating to your business would be outlined, to provide clear rules about what you do and do not accept in the case that delivery or operation of the goods or services go wrong. We can assist you here, to understand your legal obligations to your customers under the Australian Consumer Law (previously known as the Trade Practices Act). We can identify your rights and limit your liability, for example to offer replacement parts, repair and refund. If any of your products come from a third-party supplier, you should also consider their terms and conditions and which may be appropriate to pass onto your customer (for example, licensing).
Can you or your customer cancel the contract and what happens in that circumstance? If you have already done some of the work, the customer may be liable to pay for the work part performed. What rights will you and your customer have.
7. Website and Privacy
We can also draft a disclaimer to deal with anyone accessing your website to ensure that you do not become responsible for any third-party website hosting, advertisements, endorsements or links, comments posted on your site or potential viruses
Based on our experience, we understand what is needed in a ‘terms and conditions’ document to protect your business from the many unexpected legal issues that can arise. We will ask you some questions and guide you through the document. This can also be an excellent way to better understand your business and improve on your methods.