What exactly is a freelance agreement?
A freelance agreement is a special contract a business uses when outsourcing certain projects or functions to an independent unaffiliated party (i.e. the freelancer). This legal documents spells out what the freelancer is to do and how they will be paid or compensated for their services.
What should be in your freelance agreement?
A good freelance agreement in most cases does not need to be overly complicated or lengthy, but should generally include most of the following:
1. A listing of all the tasks the freelancer is to perform
2. How much or how the freelancer is to be paid (.e.g. barter), and if payment is to be on a per task or overall completion of the project basis.
3. Some sort of rubric with which to gauge the satisfactoriness of the work the freelancer performs.
4. A clause indicating that the company will own outright any and all materials produced for it by the freelancer.
By crafting and sticking to a good freelance agreement both the hiring company and the freelancer will enjoy a strong degree of security and protection.
The company will have control over what is being produced, will own what is produced outright, and will know in advance how much it will cost them. At the same time the freelancer will benefit from know exactly how they will be compensated for their work and will have clear instructions and guidance regarding the tasks they are to perform.
Unfortunately, many freelance agreements are prepared incorrectly. This can lead to a company not owning what it thought it paid the freelancer to produce. In some circumstances, the freelancer can actually be considered an employee instead of an independent contractor. This leads to a tax mess for the company that discovers it was really an “employer” because of the agreement.
Do you need help drafting your own freelance agreement?
Do you need help creating a standard freelance agreement for your business? Internet lawyer Mike Young has been helping companies write freelance agreements and all of their other major policies and documents for the better part of two decades. For help with your document drafting needs contact Attorney Young and set up a Legal Strategy Session today.