Preparation of Terms and Conditions of Business / Trading

Terms and Conditions of Business

Terms and Conditions are a much-overlooked aspect of consumer businesses. They lay out to your clients and consumers the precise terms under which you will do business with them, including the workings of your retainer and invoice schemes, the limit of your liability to them, and the nature and limits of the service being provided. A well drafted set of terms and conditions will leave the business and the consumer in no doubt as to the details of the arrangement they are entering into, and Hewetts can help with creating, drafting or revising Terms documents. We are based in Reading but operate a national service.

For Initial Free Advice Call Oliver Kew on 0118 955 9612


Hewetts have experience drafting terms and conditions for business of any size, whether you are a company, partnership, or sole trader. We offer bespoke drafting of terms and conditions for businesses ranging from estate agencies to providers of audiovisual equipment, from graphics designers to advertisers.

What Goes in The Terms?

Here are a few things you might not have previously considered when engaging with your clients and customers:

  • What precisely are your obligations to the client/customer? What are the limits to be placed on them? When does each obligation cease?
  • What are the client’s/customer’s obligations to you? What can you do to enforce them? Should they be indemnifying you?
  • What are the conditions under which either party may terminate the agreement? What happens when the termination occurs? Who owes whom what, if at all?
  • At what point does the contract/relationship come to an end in either event?
  • What warranties have been given by either party?
  • What are the limits of your liability to your client/customer? Will you end up liable to them for (for example) property damage or loss of money as a result of your, or even their, actions? Have you left it open to them to pursue you for damages as a result of an action/omission on your part?
  • Can the obligations and rights under your relationship be assigned to a third party?
  • Should either party be liable in the event of a ‘force majeure’ incident i.e. a flood or fire that prevents you performing your obligations?
  • Which legal system are the terms to be construed under?
  • Are there any health and safety considerations?
  • If you’re providing equipment, what happens if it breaks down or malfunctions?
  • Does either party owe the other a duty of confidentiality with regard sensitive information?

Even if you have considered all these scenarios, have they been communicated to your client/customer? If some of these conditions or situations have not been specified in your relationship with your client or customer then you leave your business open to considerable risk if something goes wrong. A well drafted terms and conditions will offer your business the best possible legal protection against the myriad intentional and unintentional situations that arise in the course of everyday dealings with the outside world.

 

If you are interested in Terms and Conditions for your business please contact Oliver Kew


Frequently Asked Questions

1.  Why should I bother at all with terms and conditions when they’re hardly ever needed?

The terms work in the background, fleshing out and detailing your relationship with your client or customer, and working as a safety net for when things go wrong. For a small initial outlay, you will be very glad to have them once you have a client or customer threatening court action.

2.  But nobody reads these before signing anyway. Are they still enforceable?

People should of course read the terms of an offer before signing up to it, but as we know most people don’t have the time or inclination to read the small print for every transaction they undertake. It doesn’t matter to you however. As long as the terms are presented to your client/customer before they enter into the relationship then they are bound by them.

3.  In that case, could we just put anything we like in there?

The Unfair Contract Terms Act provides protection for consumers against any terms deemed to be ‘unfair’ in their application. However the burden of proof is on the consumer to prove the term is unfair, and therefore not applicable. This doesn’t mean that we will draft grossly unfair terms for you, but it does mean that you are provided with a greater level of protection.

4.  If the terms are all drafted in legalese, then how can I hope to understand what’s in them myself?

When drafting your terms and conditions we will send you detailed correspondence, explaining the meaning and consequence of each clause included, so you can refer to that after you start using them.

5.  How can I make sure that the terms I’m using are relevant to my particular business?

We will draft bespoke terms for you based on your business type and the business model you are implementing.

6.  How can I implement them once they’re finished?

Once the terms have been finalised, we can advise you on how best to implement them within your business. If properly implemented, terms and conditions should be used with every transaction and every relationship with every client and customer.

Contact Details:

Contact Oliver Kew in our Company and Partnership Department on:
Direct Line: 0118 955 9612
Email: o.kew@hewetts.co.uk

or complete the Company Law
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