As a preliminary matter, a copywriter should use a written copywriting agreement with clients. This protects the copywriter from a legal standpoint in addition to eliminating confusion about the scope of services provided. Too often, clients mistakenly believe that copywriting includes graphics design and other work beyond sales copy.
When having your business attorney draft the written copywriting contract template you will use for your professional writing services, it’s important to consider these factors…
1. Who owns what legal rights to the sales copy? Can you recycle/repurpose the work for another client?
2. What services are included as part of the copywriting gig?
3. Equally important, what services are excluded from the project?
4. Where and when will the copywriting be done?
5. How and when will you get paid?
6. How many revisions, if any, are included in the price of your copywriting services?
7. If the client is unhappy with your work, how and where will you resolve the issue?
It’s important to note that there is no one-size-fits-all copywriting agreement floating out there in cyberspace that meets your unique needs as a copywriter and provides you with the legal protection you want. Even if you find one that appears to cover many of the issues, unless you have the legal experience to spot what’s missing, it can expose you to unnecessary risk.
And, of course, just as you wouldn’t “borrow” someone else’s work and pass it off as your sales copy, it’s risky (for copyright infringement and other reasons) to borrow someone else’s copywriting agreement and use it in your business. The safe course of action is to get a copywriting contract template drafted by your business lawyer that meets your individual needs.