The decision to work as a consultant is exciting and fulfilling; you are free to choose your projects, clients, and time as you work for yourself. With all the perks of individual consulting and freelancing services, it is good you don't forget the part of building a strong business relationship and maintaining healthy practices.
Besides the basics of planning and managing your finances, your contracts and agreement documents are crucial pillars to your business. What you layout for clients at the start of a project would go a long way to define and shape your relationship with them.
Hence, you should create a consultant fee agreement template that defines payment conditions and terms with your client before you render a service.
Before you decide on a fee for any project or service, you should have met with your prospective client at least once to discuss the parameters of work, materials needed, project duration, and payment. In such a meeting, you'd get to know about project scope/service requirements, business needs, and deliverables that are expected of you as a consultant.
Within your consultant fee agreement document should include the following details:
- Your rates, how and when you should be paid for the service.
- If you charge for late payment, how much is your rate and when does a client incur late payment cost.
- What payment method do you accept?
- Are the cost outside the main project/service charge, such as materials, travel expenses.
The points above should be discussed with your clients, and an agreement should be reached before signing the consultant fee agreement document. Besides, ensure that the contract is clear and provides necessary compensation, especially details regarding payment.
Here are things to consider when drafting a consultant fee agreement template. Besides the payment terms and conditions, below are other essentials of a consultant fee agreement document.
1. Dates in your consultant fee agreement template
Dating your agreement is very important because it specifies the length of responsibility that a client and consultant have towards each other. Dating of your agreement should cover the following:
- Start and end date of the contract
- Payment due date
- Length of confidentiality terms and non-disclosure information
- Date of renewal of contract if applicable
- When you will provide your consultant invoice.
2. Responsibility of parties in your consultant fee agreement template
A consultant fee agreement should state your responsibility and that of your client towards the service or goal. It should talk about things like material requirements and the supply of information needed to deliver a service.
3. Validation of your consultant fee agreement template
Each party should go through the document individually and ensure relevant information is captured. That should be followed with initials, date, and signature to make the document valid.
4. Terms for additional services in your consultant fee agreement template
Freelancers and consultants often face the challenge of clients coming up with additional service when a project is at mid-level of execution or when completed. It is essential to establish terms for additional service and the necessary fees on your consultant fee agreement document.
Sometimes, a client may want a more sophisticated version of what you've both agrees on or maybe a specific requirement for advance operation. A provision for this on your agreement may result in a dispute over service fees or revision.
5. Limit your liability in your consultant fee agreement template
A liability limitation clause in your consultant fee agreement document would be useful in protecting you from frivolous lawsuits that may due to a degenerated contract. Besides, if the nature of your consulting service creates a potential for damage, it would be needful to get a lawyer who understands the uniqueness of your industry.
The lawyer would help you write this clause on your agreement that will give you legal protection.
6. Terms for dispute resolution in your consultant fee agreement template
It is sad to say that some business agreements may degenerate into a dispute. Your consultant fee agreement document should specify how to manage disputes, if any, arises during project execution.