When you are working as an independent consultant, you need the protection of a written, signed contract that spells out the terms of your work. Your client will also need the protection afforded by a contract, as you will not be an employee but will be working independently of the client company. A consultant contract does not have to be written by a lawyer or be excessively wordy to be effective. The following will provide the basic elements of an effective independent consultant contract that will benefit you and your client.
Include detailed contact information for both consultant and client. List the individual’s name, the business name, mailing address and physical location, phone number, fax number, and email address for both parties. Specify which entity is the consultant and which is the client.
List the terms for payment. Specify how the payment will be made, whether by check or electronically such as through PayPal. Also specify how long after the work is completed you will give the client to submit payment.
Specify the terms of the work expected. For a written project, for example, the terms should include the number of words or number of pages expected.
Provide the deadlines to be met while working on the project. If possible, list specific dates. Otherwise, specify a period of time after the execution of the contract in which the project must be completed.
Include a termination clause which lists considerations for both parties. The termination clause specifies the terms under which either party may cancel the contract and whether there will be any financial repercussions involved.